Craigslist exchange reveals growing concerns with counterfeit money


SCOTT COUNTY, Va. - A police chase through southwest Virginia reveals a growing problem. Scott County Sheriff John Puckett said counterfeit money is turning up in abundance. "He gave a really good story that he was buying for his son for a graduation present," Don McCauley said, telling us about his recent encounter trying to sell a Jeep on Craigslist. McCauley and his wife posted the ad when they got a response from someone wanting to meet for an exchange with money in Scott County. The couple was handed $4,000 in counterfeit money. "As soon as she touched it, she noticed that it didn't feel right and it was fake," McCauley told News 5. By the time the couple confirmed they were given phony money, the buyers took off. That's when the Scott County Sheriff's Office was called. "They got to looking at it: 40 bills. All of them were hundreds with the same serial number," Sheriff John Puckett said. Puckett's deputies pursued the man who attempted to buy the Jeep, but he soon ditched it and ran. Deputies are still looking for him. The Sheriff said what happened is a sign of a greater problem: the amount of counterfeit money turning up in the county. "It's getting all the way down from hundreds, fifties, tens, and fives that we've seen so far," Puckett said. He reveals investigators have worked at least ten cases in the past couple of months. Puckett said, "Some of it you can't tell unless it's marked." He added it appears to be originating across the state line in the Tri-Cities, and many reports have a connection to local flea markets. "All I can recommend is getting one of those counterfeit pens and checking the money. It turns yellow or clear if it's good money. If it's dark or dark brown, it's usually counterfeited," he said.