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Man arrested, charged in credit card theft


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Six months after a stolen credit card was used to purchase several thousand dollars’ worth of merchandise, a Columbus man has been charged with the crimes, police said.

Ryan N. Roberts, 18, of 3882 N. Tudor Court, was taken into custody Wednesday morning on an arrest warrant charging him with receiving stolen property and fraud, both Class D felonies, according to a jail booking report.

The credit card and other items were taken June 2 from a vehicle parked off Champion Court in Tipton Lakes. Before the owner was aware of the theft, the stolen card was used to purchase more than $8,000 worth of electronic equipment from both Columbus Walmart stores, Columbus Police spokesman Lt. Matt Myers said.

The suspect also used the card at a fast-food restaurant and convenience store before the owner discovered the theft and canceled the card, Myers said.

Detectives quickly caught a break after circulating department store surveillance photos. Tips from local residents who saw the man’s picture published in The Republic eventually led investigators to Roberts, Myers said.

While police were refusing last summer to publicly identify Roberts until formal charges were drafted, Myers described their suspect at the time as being cooperative with investigators.

After Roberts was arrested Nov. 10 on unrelated misdemeanor charges of criminal recklessness and disorderly conduct, police began taking steps necessary to get him off the streets.

One day after a probable-cause affidavit was filed concerning the misdemeanor crimes, similar documents regarding June’s felony thefts were filed Nov. 27 in Bartholomew Circuit Court, court records show.

The arrest warrant for Roberts was issued Tuesday by Judge Stephen Heimann. Roberts was booked into the Bartholomew County Jail at 9:58 the next morning.

As of Friday morning, he remained behind bars in lieu of $20,000 surety or $2,000 cash bond, according to a jail spokesman.

If convicted of both felony charges, Roberts could be ordered to serve one to six years in jail, and pay fines of up to $20,000.

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