Two men were arrested after being caught with fraudulent payroll checks totaling more than $10,000. Ulysses Hentz, Jr., 28, and Sornie Garrett, 18, both of Memphis, Tenn., were charged with first and second degree forgery, fraudulent attempt to execute fictitious checks, conspiracy to commit a crime, obstruction by fleeing and obstruction by giving a false name and address to police.
Islands precinct officers responded to a call of check forgery at the Publix Supermarket, located at 155 Johnny Mercer Blvd. When they arrived, the two suspects were seen running from the store headed north.
After a brief foot chase, Advance Patrol Officer Shannon Pagano apprehended both suspects in a nearby parking lot. Police found in their possession more than $10,000 worth of fraudulent payroll checks from Man Power Unlimited Temporary Services and several different forms of identification. The payroll checks were created on a computer.
Further investigation by financial crimes detectives revealed the pair has been targeting grocery stores in the Wilmington Island area since December 11, cashing checks totaling more than $2,000. The other two targeted stores are the Kroger on Johnny Mercer Boulevard and the Piggly Wiggly on Highway 80.
• The foreman of a construction site called police after he saw three men stealing wire. The man told police that he was taking a nap in his truck. He awoke to see the three men cutting and removing wire from the construction site. When the men noticed the foreman, he started talking to them so they wouldn’t get suspicious. He took down their tag number and called police.
He told the officers that the men had a magnetic sticker on their truck that named a utility company. He said that made him suspicious because employees of that utility company weren’t likely to come on a construction site and take someone else’s supplies. An officer ran the tag number to get the name of the owner of the truck. The foreman said his company would prosecute.
• While on routine patrol, officers heard someone screaming for help. They observed a man chasing a second man down Abercorn Street. The first man advised them that he had warned the suspect several times not to come onto his property. He said he has called police in the past because the suspect had stolen from his business. On this occasion, when the man confronted the suspect, the suspect punched him in the face and then attempted to flee. The victim began to pursue the suspect and they were observed by police. The suspect was very upset and refused to speak with the officers. The victim was given a case report number and advised on warrant procedures. He said he didn’t need medical treatment.
• A man called police from a Victory Drive shopping center and reported that his grocery cart had struck an unoccupied car.
When an officer arrived, the man told him he had left the cart at the edge of a parking lot next to the store’s entrance. He said he went back inside the store, and when he came out, two people told him the cart had rolled across the parking lot and struck a car that was parked in the spot closest to the grocery store. The man looked and saw the cart resting against the rear, driver’s side door. When he went to look further, he saw that the cart had caused two small dents on the car’s door and called police. The officer then spoke with the two witnesses. They said they saw the man leave the shopping cart at the store’s entrance. The next time they saw it, it was rolling across the parking lot towards the car. By the time they noticed the cart, it was too far away for them to stop it from hitting the car.
The owner of the car was located inside the grocery. He asked that a report be filed so he could notify his insurance company. The man who left the cart told the car’s owner to call him to let him know what the repairs will cost. ç