Forrest City Police Investigate Counterfeiting Scam

June 01, 2005 -- Posted at 8:30 P.M. CDT

Forrest City, AR -- Merchants in Forrest City vow to work hard to avoid being victimized by the recent counterfeiting ring.

Freddie Montgomery owns Freddie's Beauty Salon.

"I am extremely cautious because I have to work hard for my money. I have a pencil that marks my bills. I also can look, and get a reflection from the left hand corner, and I always check," said Montgomery.

Employees at Southview Liquor Store have a no tolerance policy.

"Gave me a twenty dollar bill, I marked it, it was fake, he said he would be right back. He ran out of here. I wrote down the license plate number and gave it to police," said Robert Smith.

Detective Sergeant, John Riggins, says this counterfeit ring resurfaced in Forrest City about a month ago.

"A week or ten days ago, I was notified the money was showing up in Wynne as well," said Riggins.

Police have made several arrests for passing counterfeit money, but they say no one has been arrested for producing it. Police say everyone, not just business owners, needs to be able to distinguish fake money from the real thing.

"Look at bills and hold them up to the light, you will see a water marking in different places on different bills. You will also see the president on the right hand corner," said Riggins.

As for these business owners--they will continue to thoroughly check the bills coming in and going out of their stores.

"Once it gets away from me, I can't replace it," said Montgomery.

"We're going to continue to mark all of the bills until all of the counterfeit money is out of our city," said Smith.