Officer Instinct Leads to Forgery Arrests
A San Angelo Police Officer who followed up on a suspicious encounter is credited for locating two suspects involved in local Forgery cases.
James Christopher Carter and Valerie Gilchrest of San Angelo were arrested Tuesday morning on charges of Forgery Financial Instrument and Fail to Identity Giving False Information.
The pair became the subject of a Police Broadcast Message issued by a San Angelo Police Officer who encountered the pair during an unrelated call just after midnight this morning. During the unrelated call, Officer R. Francis became aware that he was being watched by the pair, who had just exited a UHaul Van at the Stripes Convenience store located at 1542 S. Bell Street.
At the completion of his call, Officer Francis acted on his instinct and researched the shift’s incident reports. While reading the report of a Forgery/ Counterfeit that occurred in the 300 block of Koberlin Street, he noted the suspect’s descriptions matched the descriptions of the suspicious subjects who were watching him, including the suspect’s use of a UHaul Van. Officer Francis issued a Police Broadcast Message, alerting other officers of the possible connection.
Shortly after, SAPD K-9 Officer J. Fincher located a subject who matched the description sent out in broadcast message in the unit block of W. Avenue P, standing near a UHaul Van. Additional officers responded to the location and Carter and Gilchrest, who both initially provided false information to police about their identities, were detained.
During the field investigation, police observed printers and papers consistent with counterfeiting practices in plain view inside the van. During a probable cause search of the van, police recovered additional items used in the counterfeiting process as well as evidence linking the pair to another recent Forgery report.
Investigators with the San Angelo Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division and Crime Scene Investigations Unit responded to the location to assist with the investigation. The counterfeiting items were seized and the vehicle was processed for evidence.
Carter and Gilchrest are suspected of being linked to several additional Forgery investigations and additional charges may be filed.