Over the last week, Columbus police have received nine different reports of counterfeit bills being passed at local businesses. Lieutenant Joe Richardson says the fake money, ranging from ten to fifty dollar bills, has cropped up in a variety of places.
“The majority of them were used in gas stations around town,” Richardson said. “On a couple occasions they were used in Wal-Marts and on one occasion in a local restaurant.”
Richardson says no single person is suspected of passing the counterfeit bills. He says it’s important for both merchants and customers to check their money—especially since most of the counterfeit bills have been easily identifiable.
“Many of these have been really bad counterfeit bills,” Richardson said. “As a matter of fact, some of those didn’t even get exchanged — they’d been picked up somewhere else and when tried to use or tried to return as change, they were identified by both the merchant and the customer as phony money.”
Richardson encourages people to visit the Treasury Department’s website for tips on how to spot counterfeit bills. He adds the only way to flush funny money out of the system is to report it to the police.