Authorities say an investigation into a fake check has led to a man and woman who may be involved in counterfeit money moving across Izard, Fulton and Lawrence Counties in Northeast Arkansas.
Shaun Clair Bickford, age 40 of Izard County is facing multiple forgery charges after he passed fake checks in Izard and Fulton counties.
The charges stem from an incident when on Jan. 22, a victim reported to Fulton County investigators that Bickford had given him a $2,900 fake check as payment for a Dodge pickup truck.
The victim stated when he tried to cash the check, he was told it appeared fake.
Izard County sheriff’s Office investigators interviewed Bickford about similar incidents. Bickford admitted to giving the check that he knew to be fake that a friend had given him as payment for the truck. Bickford stated he believed the checks appeared to be real enough to deposit but admitted they would eventually be returned.
Bickford has been charged with felony forgery, felony theft by deception and as a habitual offender.
Bickford faces four counts of forgery in Izard County stemming from an interaction Jan. 24 when Bickford allegedly purchased a generator online through Facebook Market Place and provided the property owner with counterfeit $100 bills.
The victim took the money to the bank and was informed the bills were counterfeit and reported the incident to law enforcement.
On Jan. 24th Brienna Baney, age 37 and Bickford were both arrested for active warrants out of Izard County. When incarcerated, jailers discovered 74 fake $100 bills noting that 68 of the bills confiscated shared the same serial number as those given to the generator’s owner.
While incarcerated a search warrant was executed in Horseshoe Bend, 33 additional fake bills were confiscated from an associate of Bickford and all bills located were consistent with the bills located from Baney and Bickford according to authorities.
Baney said she had ordered the fake money online and was planning on using them for her grandkids to learn how to count money according to reports.
Baney stated she had been with Bickford who purchased a truck in Fulton County and the two had also traveled to Ravenden (Lawrence County) together to purchase a camper.
Both transactions were made through Facebook and both the truck and camper were purchased using checks given to Bickford from another resident of Horseshoe Bend.
Baney told authorities Bickford had set up the deal for a generator and knew he was using fake money to purchase the generator.
Baney continued telling law enforcement that the checks passed in Fulton and Lawrence Counties were bad.
Bickford told authorities he’d paid a man with a check for $500 and had also written a check for the camper.
Bickford also told authorities he and his girlfriend, Sherry Anderson had written the check for the camper, claiming that Baney had not signed any checks. He continued by claiming that Anderson owed him for old debts and that they had paid $4,300 for the camper claiming none of the money was counterfeit.
As investigations continue, charges are pending in other counties.
Over the last several months, numerous counterfeit bills have surfaced accords multiple Northeast Arkansas counties.