LINCOLN, Maine — As part of what police describe as a burgeoning investigation, a Lincoln couple appeared Friday in Bangor District Court on charges they passed about $3,000 in bad checks in at least seven Penobscot County towns.
Samuel and Jennifer Thompson, ages 27 and 29, were charged late Thursday with Class C forgery and negotiating worthless instruments after police served a search warrant on their Main Street home, Police Chief William Flagg said.
Officer Chad Chubbuck, the lead investigator, and other police have so far traced bad checks from the Thompsons to businesses in Bangor, Greenbush, Lee, Lincoln, Old Town, Passadumkeag and Winn, Flagg said.
“Checks are still coming in. We are exceeding $3,000 [in bad checks cashed] and they are still coming in,” Flagg said Friday. “We have also recovered a majority of the items purchased with the fraudulent checks.”
Flagg asked anyone who might have received a check from the Thompsons to contact police at 794-8455. Police are also working with law enforcement agencies beyond Penobscot County to see whether more checks have bounced.
Movie America, a video and book store on Main Street, was one of several stores at which bad checks were received, store purchasing manager Alan Dill has said.
Dill said he had received four checks from the couple totaling $544.24 since March 4. The first two came on March 4; the next, on March 11. Dill said he knew of two other local stores that were victimized.
Working with police, the Lincoln Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce issued an e-mail bulletin Thursday that Flagg wrote to businesses throughout the Katahdin and Lincoln Lakes areas warning them of the Thompsons’ alleged activities.
Samuel Thompson and his wife, who was or is also known as Jennifer Stevens, have an extensive record of arrests and convictions for fraudulent check passing and motor vehicle infractions, Lincoln District Court officials said.
Thompson received a $100 fine and paid $46.81 in restitution when he pleaded guilty to negotiating a worthless instrument in March 2007, court officials said. Jennifer Thompson pleaded guilty to two counts of that charge and paid $200 in fines and $123.31 in restitution in March 2007.