Counterfeiter targeted Clerk of Court office, Dade City computer shop

Arrest comes after stolen car pulled over
Posted at 5:46 PM, Jun 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-28 17:46:29-04

Hard work has kept Debbie Larkin and her husband’s computer business going for 30 years in Dade City. That’s why she can’t understand those who try and take the easy way out.

“When you try and get rich by the wrong means. You are not going to prosper. In the end you are going to get caught.”

And that’s just what happened to a guy Pasco Sheriff’s deputies said printed counterfeit checks using the Larkin’s Compumax Logo.

“I was surprised yesterday when the deputy called me about that. All I could say was thank god nothing was stolen from us.”

Deputies pulled over a stolen car Tuesday and found Mickey Bearden inside with a stash of stuff they said are used for counterfeiting checks. They found a printer, blank check paper, a calligraphy set, super glue and tweezers.

“Everything you need for a forgery was bought at an Office Depot,” said Detective Spencer Hubble.

Deputies also found several stolen ID’s and credit cards they said are likely connected to burglaries.

They said, not only did Bearden counterfeit Compumax Checks, but also checks from the Pasco County Clerk of Court. And another Clerk of Court in Kentucky.

“I’ve seen better checks, but to the untrained eye, if you went into a mom and pop store and you were to try and cash them. They might not think twice about it with the proper ID,” said Hubble.

Investigators said they aren’t sure yet if Bearden actually got away with cashing any of the phony checks, but they did find some stubs.

Bearden’s been arrested for forgery before. And now he’s back in jail where Debbie said he belongs.

“It’s just ill gotten gain. And you are not going to win.”

Pasco Clerk of Court Paula O’Neil said while her office was targeted, it was never actually threatened.

“So far, no checks from this operation have been presented at our partner banks, so, clearly, none were cashed,” O’Neil said. “Of course, we will continue to be vigilant, as we always are, over the possibility of counterfeit checks being presented against our accounts.”