Phony money hurts businesses, keeps police busy

RUSSELLVILLE Ky.- The Russellville Police Department is on the hunt for counterfeit cash.

While most counterfeit bills can be exposed by a watercolor marker, the police department’s Facebook page posted that fake $20 and $100 bills have been circulating, and they’re known to pass the marker test. Russellville Police Department Detective Nichole Bibb said the bursts of fake currency is not so easy to track.

“It seems like we have spurts of it. At one point in time, we’ll  see three or four cases at a time where there’s been counterfeit money,” Bibb said.

Bibb said the origins of fake currency is unclear, making this case much more difficult.

“I would love to find them all if I could. There’s just some cases that we never know where the money comes from because it’s not caught until it’s already been through two or three people’s hands. It’s hard to track down after that,” Bibb said.

This fake currency ends up in banks, and of course businesses. The locally owned Piggly Wiggly grocery store manager Jesse Vincent said he’s now on the lookout for these deceptive bills.

“There’s definitely been a lot of problems with it lately. The Russellville Police Department have posted saying be on the watch for them. We’re taking more caution, making sure we’re checking bills to make sure they’re authentic,” Vincent said.

The issue can worsen, as fake bills wreak havoc on sales.

“If we get stuck with it, we as a business lose that money. There’s no way for us to get it back,” Vincent said.

If these counterfeit bills spread further, it’s not just businesses that will hurt, but also, customers.

“It’s a complete loss to the business. The customer is now out of that money, and they’re not spending the money, then the business isn’t making as much money because they’re losing money on fake bills,” Vincent said.