Fraudulent bank transactions lead to multiple arrests

BEDFORD – Two Bedford men were arrested Wednesday after Bedford Police officers were called to German American Bank on October 17, 2022, on a report of fraud. 

According to a probable cause affidavit, a bank employee reported that a person by the name of  Landarius Hoskins opened an account and made multiple $2000 deposits on October 7, 2022, and later withdrew those funds from the bank. The deposits were flagged as fraudulent.

On September 20, 2022, Dylan Bruner opened an account at the bank. On October 14, 2022, he submitted a mobile deposit of $2,000 and withdrew that amount. That deposit was also flagged as fraudulent. Bruner also made a $500 withdrawal transaction at the ATM at the German American Bank located in Dubois. 

Later, the bank took action and stopped an additional $2000 check that Bruner had attempted to deposit.

Joshua Early

On September 26, 2022, 40-year-old Joshua Early opened a German American bank account at the same branch. He then submitted a mobile deposit in the amount of $2,000 on October 14, 2022, and withdrew the money. This deposit was also flagged as fraudulent. 

Early then attempted to submit another mobile deposit of $2,000, but once again the bank to action and stopped the transaction prior to it being deposited into his account.  

George Patton

 On September 22, 2022, 31-year-old George Patton, opened an account at the same German American Bank branch. According to the bank employee, Patton submitted a mobile deposit in the amount of $2,000 on October 14, 2022, and withdrew the funds from his account. This deposit was also marked as fraudulent.

Patton attempted to submit another mobile deposit in the amount of $2,000 but the bank stopped this deposit transaction as well.  

The bank employee stated to the police the checks were all related to suspects currently staying at the Transitions facility.

On October 18, 2022, a Bedford Police detective began an investigation into the thefts.

During this investigation, a man by the name of Roosevelt Hawthorne opened an account and made a deposit transaction in the amount of $2,500.  Roosevelt then withdrew $500 from the ATM, returned to the bank, and requested additional funds. A bank employee informed Hawthorne the deposit had not cleared. Hawthorne exited the bank and proceeded to Jay C Foods Plus, where he spent $1,700.  

Police secured subpoenas for the five individual’s bank accounts, possible video, and photos of those individuals entering the bank. 

On October 19, 2022, a detective interviewed Roosevelt Hawthorne. He admitted he provided Hoskins and a guy named “Jeffrey”, with the password to his account and that’s how the mobile deposit was conducted. Hawthorne stated that the money he withdrew was from the deposit, and he provided that money to Hoskins. Hawthorne stated that he was to receive $200 for those actions. Hawthorne claimed the money he obtained from Jay C Food Plus was taken to a female McDonald’s employee with plans to give that money to Hoskins. He claimed he did not know her name and that he met her on G Street near Transitions. Hawthorne advised that he gave money orders to that female except for $500. He admitted that he spent the $500.

 Hawthorne stated that he and Hoskins communicate via phone, however, Hoskins had not answered or returned his recent calls and that he was no longer staying at Transitions. Hawthorne stated the money that was deposited into his  account “was supposed to be legit.” Hawthorne replied he was “kinda curious about it” when the detective questioned Hawthorne if he actually thought the money was legitimate.

The detective divulged the case involved other suspects to Hawthorne and he responded by saying “yeah, they used all of us”. Hawthorne stated that each individual involved was at, or lived at the Transitions facility. Hawthorne claimed the signature on the back of the check was not his, which was later confirmed by the detective. The detective found zero signature matches when he compared the other fraudulent checks to the other four individuals’ signatures.

Hawthorne admitted that he opened the account so the money could be funneled through it and so that he could get a cut. Hawthorne provided the detective with Hoskin’s phone number but stated he had not spoken with him for days and he was unaware of where he was currently staying.   

 The detective attempted to contact Hoskins along with Patton, Early, and Bruner but was unsuccessful.

 On October 24, 2022, the detective received video footage of the individuals inside the bank making the alleged transactions. He was later able to confirm the five individuals’ identities with the cooperation of the BMV.

Based on this information, warrants for Joshua Early and George Patton were requested on charges of fraud and theft. Both Early and Patton were arrested on Wednesday.