Merchants warned about bogus checks

By Kathy Helms-Hughes

   Elizabethton Police Department investigators still are looking for a woman who is passing bogus $250 checks which appear to be drawn on the account of Sycamore Shoals Animal Hospital.
   "They are not their checks. They do not know this woman," said Detective Matt Bowers. "All checks have come back bogus."
   The first check was passed Sept. 21 at Ingles, 768 W. Elk Ave. The second check also was passed Sept. 21 at J&W Market. A third check recently was received by Sav-A-Lot.
   According to Detective Bowers, all checks were written in the amount of $250 and were cashed by a white female, approximately 27 years old, 5 feet 3 inches to 5 feet 4 inches tall, weighing 135 pounds, with brown shoulder-length hair and brown eyes.
   The woman, Glenna Newingham, is wanted in at least four other states on the same type charges, Bowers said. She presents Tennessee identification, uses her own driver's license number and signs her name to the checks.
   Bowers said it is not difficult for thieves to print bogus checks.
   "Just look in the phone book: You've got the name, address, and number of the business," he said. The person then adds the company logo, possibly retrieved from a Website, to complete the check and make it look professional.
   Bowers asks that local merchants be on the lookout for the suspect and call Emergency Communications Center if she is spotted.
   "Call 911, get a vehicle description, a tag number -- anything they can get," Bowers said.
   Detective Greg Workman said merchants also should be on the lookout for checks written on the account of Larry Smith, 151 Woodland Drive, Johnson City, and drawn on Bank of Tennessee in Johnson City.
   "Three out of the nine stolen checks still have not come back to the bank. Five of them were passed at Citgo and one at Pizza Hut in Elizabethton. "
   The checks are in varying amounts -- "anywhere from $27 to $645, and that was to a business in Johnson City," Workman said.
   "There is a Larry Smith but that account has been closed since 1999," Workman said.
   Anyone receiving any of the checks is asked to call Detective Workman at 547-6411.