Fake Bills Turn Up In Central Ohio Stores - NBC4: Columbus, Ohio News, Weather, and Sports (WCMH-TV)

Fake Bills Turn Up In Central Ohio Stores

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NEWARK, Ohio -

Stores are banking on shoppers spending their hard-earned money this holiday season, but counterfeiters can hurt the bottom line.

"Most of the people that come here are from out of town. We don't know who they are, won't spend that money where police know who they are," said Newark police Sgt. Paul Davis.

In Newark, stores fought through the issue during the spring and summer months, and now a fake $50 bill showed up this week.

"Smaller denominations bleached and they put the higher denomination over it," said Davis.

There is always that threat for businesses, and small businesses know a few bogus bills can mean a world of hurt.

"It is my livelihood and the girls that work here. We work hard for every dollar and when someone takes that from us, it is a personal stab," said Maren Roth, owner of Rowe Boutique in the Short North.

While Rowe hasn't been targeted by counterfeiters, workers take all the precautions to make sure it stays that way.

"They see we have cameras in the store, we use the pens to check bills and we don't take checks anymore because people write bad checks," Roth said.

Newark police said the number of counterfeit cases in 2013 is in the 40s.

Jonathan Shuck, agent in charge for the Columbus region for the U.S. Secret Service, released the following statement to NBC4:

The U.S. Secret Service routinely sees a spike in counterfeit money activity during the holiday season.

We take the very seriously as this is a felony punishable up to 20 years for passing counterfeit currency.

We encourage businesses and patrons to be diligent during this busy time.

You can visit our website www.secretservice.gov and click on the Know Your Money tab to review the security features of all denominations to include the new $100 bill.

If a business receives a counterfeit bill they should keep the bill and notify local police or the secret service.

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