Police earlier this year charged two Hagerstown men in a counterfeit case, but the problem of fake money being passed in the city persists, investigators say.
On May 5, counterfeit money was used at the CVS/pharmacy at 34 N. Cannon Ave., and on April 20, a counterfeit bill was used at the McDonald’s at 316 E. Washington St., according to Detective Sgt. Jim Hurd of the Hagerstown Police Department.
In the May 5 incident, a counterfeit $100 bill was passed at the CVS/pharmacy by an older man, Hurd said. The man received change from the bill and left the store, but employees did not realize until later that the bill was counterfeit, he said.
A counterfeit $20 bill was passed at the McDonald’s, but store employees did not notice until they were putting money in a safe that the bill was suspicious, Hurd said.
Matthew Holden Clukey, 20, and Stefan Alin Sterling, 22, were charged after police searched a city home on March 1 at 738 Summit Ave., where the two lived, and found a trash can containing sheets of paper with printed images of currency, according to court records.
Clukey and Sterling were charged with manufacturing U.S. currency with intent to defraud, scanning an electronic image of U.S. currency with intent to defraud and possession of counterfeit U.S. currency, according to Washington County District Court records.
Sterling also faced an additional charge of possession of counterfeit U.S. currency, court records said.
A trial date of Aug. 29 in Washington County District Court has been scheduled for Clukey, Michael said.
Sterling later pleaded guilty to possession of counterfeit U.S. currency, while charges of manufacturing U.S. currency with the intent to defraud, scanning an electronic image of U.S. currency with intent to defraud and one other count of possession of counterfeit U.S. currency were dropped, Deputy State’s Attorney Joseph Michael said.
Sterling received a three-year sentence, but it was suspended, Michael said.
He was also placed on probation for two years and fined $1,000, but he does not have to pay it unless he violates probation, Michael said.
Clukey is also charged with two counts of possession of counterfeit U.S. currency, theft less than $1,000 in value and theft less than $100 in connection with two other cases, according to court records.
District court trials are scheduled for July 12 and Aug. 2 in those cases, Michael said.
One case stemmed from an incident Jan. 15 in which a woman sold a Sony PSP and 11 games to an individual in the Big Lots parking lot at 1105 Maryland Ave., according to court records.
The woman said a man stepped from a silver sport utility vehicle and handed her $100 and three $20s.
The woman said she attempted to use the $160 at Big Lots and was told by store workers that the currency was “non-genuine,” the records said.
The other case involved three $100 bills and a $20 bill that were counterfeit, according to court records.
A Cumberland, Md., man told police he sold items that he advertised on craigslist. The buyer asked the Cumberland man to meet him Jan. 21 at a house on Summit Avenue near City Park, according to court records.