CLINTON, Miss. (WJTV) – High tech theft in Clinton, credit card information was swiped directly from the gas pump but on Tuesday, October 4, 2016, there is now word of arrests in the case.
Chief Ford Hayman calls skimming an epidemic and while it’s new to Clinton, it’s not a new crime.
Chief Hayman says it’s very common in Florida and along Interstate 10.
Now, it’s made its way to the Jackson-Metro area.
How this works is somebody purchases gas and there’s a device that’s been inserted into the pump and it’s downloading, extracting, their credit card information.
Just like that, you could be defrauded.
Clinton Police Chief Ford Hayman says CPD found a skimmer on a pump Thursday, September 29, 2016, at the Shell gas station on Northside Drive.
On Friday, September 30, 2016, officers saw two men at the gas station after it had closed.
They arrested 28-year-old Tocaris Calvin of Bolton and 41-year-old Louis Smith from Lacaster, California.
Officers found a laptop in the car and after interviewing the men found out they were trying to access the blue tooth skimmer.
Multiple credit cards and gift cards were also found.
“They were in possession of some hardware that was just totally out of place. And he was able to recognize that, put it together, and call investigations,” said Chief Hayman.
“Very shocking. It makes me fear for our school and for my personal information,” said Darla Kemmerer.
Kemmerer was at the Shell gas station to fill up Tuesday.
Instead of paying at the pump, she went inside.
“Now I’m going to go inside to fuel the bus. That’s with the police officer told me to do instead of using a card on the outside,” said Kemmerer.
The skimmer has been removed and Chief Hayman says his officers have checked every gas station in Clinton.
They’re confident the pumps are clean.
Card skimming isn’t confined to Clinton.
Just last week, Pearl Police found a skimmer at a gas station.
Chief Hayman believes that case and this one may be connected.
In fact, police believe these men are part of a ring out of Atlanta.
They’re also looking for other people.
Warrants have been issued for Timothy Hodges and Terrence Calvin, both of Bolton, who are believed to be involved in the skimming case.
Smith is being held on a $5,000,000 bond because of his criminal history.
Calvin was released on a $1,000 bond.
Clinton is working with the attorney general’s office, the Hind’s County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Secret Service along with several metro police departments.