KOSCIUSKO — A couple has been charged with fraud after using a male’s identification information to forge checks.
Nikoda Lynn Neff, 29, 555 N. Locke St., Nappanee, is being charged with fraud on a financial institution, a level 5 felony; and theft, a level 6 felony.
Richard Williams, 37, 106 Pottawatomi Drive, Elkhart, is being charged with theft, two counts of forgery, and identity deception, all level 6 felonies; and fraud on a financial institution, a level 5 felony.
On Aug. 29, an officer with the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department spoke with a Lake City Bank employee who advised that a female, identified as Neff, wrote multiple checks on a closed Chase bank account to a male subject and herself. The checks were deposited into both Neff’s and the male’s bank accounts. The checks were then returned on a closed account and Lake City Bank suffered a financial loss of $2,094.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, on June 13, an account was opened in the male’s name at Lake City Bank. A male, later identified as Neff’s boyfriend, Williams, used the male’s identifying information to open the account.
On July 29, Neff wrote a check from her closed account in the amount of $280. On July 30, she wrote a check for $364. On Aug. 1, Neff wrote a check for $350. All four of the checks were written from her closed Chase bank account.
On Aug. 12, Neff wrote a check for Williams in the amount of $400. On Aug. 13, Neff wrote a check for $700. The checks were endorsed by Williams using the male’s identifying information.
On Sept. 5, the officer spoke with Neff’s mother, who advised she went to Neff’s residence and found a driver’s license and birth certificate that did not belong to Neff or Williams. Officers obtained a search warrant for Neff’s residence and found numerous checks from Neff’s bank account. Officers also found a letter from the bank to the male stating they were going to close his bank account because of an overdrawn balance.
On Sept. 11, the officer spoke with the male whose identifying information was used on the checks. The male told the officer he has been incarcerated for a year, stating that he had been in a relationship with Neff, but had been told she was now with Williams. The male said he left his birth certificate and driver’s license at Neff’s residence. Williams did not have the male’s permission or consent to use his identifying information for the checks.
Neff was booked in the Kosciusko County Jail on Nov. 21, with a $10,250 surety and cash bond.
Williams is currently wanted on a warrant, with a $10,250 surety and cash bond.