FORT PAYNE, AL (WAFF) - The Sears Hometown store in Fort Payne is one of several Alabama stores that have been hit by a recent string of theft by deception.
Tina Potter, the owner of the store, says the first incident happened at her location on November 28.
"I think it started with me. He actually stole a 54-inch Husqvarna mower from me and a weedeater," said Potter.
The crook then took his bad check operation on the road for much of December.
"Several days later he went to Jasper, Alabama. He had stole something there. I believe it was a Kitchen Aid refrigerator that he got from them," said Potter. "He went to Oneonta, stole an appliance there, to as well. Then he went on down to Opelika, Alabama and stole another mower with them," she added.
According to management at the Fort Payne location, Telecheck initially declined the check, but then later approved it over the phone.
"This was after the man claimed he had money in that account and insisted the check was good," said Potter.
The store has several pictures of the suspect from its surveillance cameras. He used the name Mike King Jr. and gave a Killen mailing address when he asked to fill out paperwork for the warranty at checkout.
However, the address on his Regions bank check was in Gadsden.
All total, the Fort Payne store is out $3,400 from the purchase of the lawn mower and weed trimmer.
"You know, he was just a normal person. And you really wanna believe people, the good in people now, but you really have to be cautious, because that's a lot of money to lose," said Potter.
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