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Police Arrest Bronx Man in Phone Fraud Ring

MOUNT PLEASANT, N.Y. – The Mount Pleasant Police Department arrested a Bronx man in relation to a ring of fraud schemes at the Sprint Wireless Store in Hawthorne.

Darlin Lopez-Garcia, 37, was arrested Jan. 28 on felony charges of forgery and identity theft as well as misdemeanor larceny. An investigation by the Mount Pleasant Police Department determined Lopez-Garcia to be a suspect. According to Mount Pleasant Police Chief Louis Alagno, Lopez-Garcia allegedly hacked into multiple Sprint Wireless customer store accounts and then renewed a two-year contract on the customer’s account to purchase a new Apple iPhone, which he’d later pick up from the store acting as the individual. He would later sell the phones for an increased rate.

“This is a whole new form of fraud that we’ve never seen before,” Alagno said. “The most difficult part about it is that by the time the customer realizes that the phone has been purchased on their account, the phone is long gone and sold on the streets somewhere.”

Alagno said it is undisclosed how much money was stolen in the fraud and that the scheme likely contains more individuals. The investigation is ongoing.

In other news from the police blotter:

Domestic Criminal Mischief: Mount Pleasant Police Officers arrested 23-year-old Saul Buezo of Hawthorne on Jan. 28 on charges of criminal mischief in the third degree, a felony, as well as criminal mischief in the fourth degree and endangering the welfare of a child, both misdemeanors. Buezo was allegedly involved in a domestic dispute where he damaged property in the home and endangered the well being of his two-month old newborn child.

DWI: Mount Pleasant officers responded to a minor motor-vehicle accident on Pleasantville Road in Pleasantville shortly after 10 p.m. on Jan. 27. After interviewing those on the scene, police arrested 35-year-old Louis Rocano of Thornwood on charges of DWI and operating a vehicle without a license, both misdemeanor charges. No residents were injured in the accident.

Mailbox Prank: A Mount Pleasant patrolman observed a residential mailbox on fire while driving down Hayhurst Avenue in Valhalla during the late hours of Jan. 26. After the flames were subdued, police determined the act to be a prank as a brown paper bag filled with fecal matter was found in the mailbox. No arrest has been made and the investigation continues.

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