Man caught making purchases with fraudulent credit card at WLU Bookstore

WRPS capture the accused near the Quad on campus. (Photo by Shelby Blackley)

A 30-year-old man from Brampton led the Waterloo Region Police Services (WRPS) and the Special Constable Services (SCS) on a foot chase at the Wilfrid Laurier University campus yesterday after he was caught attempting to make purchases with a fraudulent credit card at Laurier’s bookstore.

This was not the first attempt by this individual and was recognized by the Bookstore’s staff yesterday. He was noted for making more fraudulent purchases back in December and on July 4.

On Thursday, the staff alerted the SCS when the accused was recognized and a foot chase ensued. An arrest was made around 4:00 p.m. Thursday afternoon.

“There was a short struggle inside of the Bookstore, and there was a struggle outside as well from what I’m told,” said Chris Hancocks, the operations managers at SCS, noting that the accused is a “non-university” person.

Hancocks said the accused ran away from police on campus, where he led WRPS to the Science Building on campus, but was captured quickly.

According to Deborah Da Costa, the director of retail/printing services at Laurier’s Bookstore, the man made purchases of about $2,500 on July 4 and close to $5000 back in December on two separate occasions. A bank altered the Bookstore after the July 4 incident, and the Bookstore was subsequently given the funds back for that particular purchase.

While not all funds have been returned for the December purchases, Da Costa is hopeful that they will be soon. The man accused made purchases for multiple Apple products.

“We’re extremely disappointed. You never want to see that,” explained Da Costa.  “When fraud happens, it’s a cost to the university and the students, that’s who pays for it in the end. So if they take from us, they take from the university.”

According to Olaf Heinzel, public affairs coordinator for the WRPS, the accused is charged with multiple counts of use of a forged credit card and illegal possession of credit card data, with many of the charges relating to previous incidents. He was scheduled to be in court today.

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