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UPDATE: Woman Pleads Guilty in Stolen Credit Card Shopping Spree

By: Cathleen Moxley, Anna Baxter, Jeremy Edwards Email
By: Cathleen Moxley, Anna Baxter, Jeremy Edwards Email

UPDATE 7/23/12 @ 2:15 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A woman has admitted to going on a spending spree with other people's credit cards.

Angela Nichols pleaded guilty Monday to four counts of credit card fraud and one count of forgery.

Police say Nichols, her husband Charles Burns and another man, Roy McMillion, broke into several cars in Charleston, took credit cards and then used them in 14 counties.

Nichols faces up to 50 years in prison when she is sentenced.

She also has to pay back more than $5,800.

Burns and McMillion are also facing charges in the case.



UPDATE 11/30/11 @ 11 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Two more people were arrested Wednesday by Kanawha County Sheriff's deputies in a statewide crime spree involving stolen credit cards and car break-ins.

Deputies arrested Angela Nichols and Charles Burns during a traffic stop in Charleston.

Charleston Police say they have been looking for these people for months.

Police say they’re involved in thefts and making illegal purchases in 14 counties. Police have been putting out surveillance video of the suspects for a couple months in the hope of finding them.

"I’m not convicted yet. You're innocent until proven guilty," Nichols says.

When asked for comment, Burns shouted a few profane words and declined to say anything further.

According to criminal complaints filed Wednesday, police identified the pair in June after getting a report of a car being broken into at the FMC Sportsmen Club in Teays Valley.

Since then, police say they’ve broken into cars outside schools, the Charleston YMCA and several other places.

"It is very serious. The banking institutions alone will be out thousands upon thousands of dollars. The stores will be out thousands of dollars," Charleston Police Sgt. Bobby Eggleton says.

He added the alleged crime spree also has caused significant damage to the victims who’ve spent time dealing with shattered car windows, missing credit cards and other issues.

Police say Nichols and Burns are connected to Roy McMillion, who was arrested Monday and charged with fraud. According to a criminal complaint, he used a stolen credit card to buy a $400 gift card at Lowe’s in South Charleston.

"I think you're making an erroneous assumption," McMillion told WSAZ.com at the time of his arrest.

Even though the thefts started months ago, police point out this is the time of year when these crimes spike.

"You're out there trying to have the Christmas spirit. And, they're out there trying to steal from you. We're telling people just to be careful," Eggleton says.

Kanawha County Cpl. F.E. Flowers adds, "You think you're putting (your valuables) in the trunk to hide them. You're really not. They sit and watch parking lots, and they see people doing that."

Police say the arrests will lighten their workload, as detectives have devoted a lot of time in the last several months to try to track them down.

Eggleton says, "The bond here is $250,000 on her, $35,000 on him. They'll stay (in jail) for a while. Merry Christmas."

So far, police have charged Nichols and Burns with crimes in Braxton, Putnam and Kanawha counties.

Police say they know about other cases and expect more people to come forward. Police are asking you to give them a call if you think you may have been a victim of these crimes.



UPDATE 11/28/11 @ 11 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- An Elview, W.Va., man was arrested Monday night in connection with a stolen credit card shopping spree that stretched throughout the Kanawha Valley and beyond, according a news release from the Charleston Police Department.

Roy McMillion, 79, was arrested on a warrant for fraudulent use of a controlled access device (a stolen credit card).

The crime spree started in late October and continued into November. Several vehicles in the Charleston area were broken into, and credit cards were used in shopping sprees that stretched throughout Kanawha and Putnam counties and beyond.

Also wanted in connection with the credit card thefts are Angela Nichols (also known as Angela Burns) and her husband Charles Burns.

Police say the suspect used the stolen credit cards within minutes to purchase large-ticket items. The three suspects are are believed to be responsible for similar crimes in 14 different counties involving 12 different agencies.

If you have any information about the case and/or the whereabouts of the Burns couple, please call the Charleston Police Department Criminal Investigations Division at 304-348-6480.



UPDATE 11/1/11 @ 6:50 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Some call it a shopping spree, but police call it a crime spree. Two people in the Kanawha Valley are out making some big purchases with money that isn’t theirs.

Police are searching for a man and woman accused of breaking into dozens of cars, stealing credit cars and purchasing items like electronics.

They've been getting away with it for about a month, but surveillance video is surfacing from multiple stores in Putnam and Kanawha counties.

Video may be the best tool for helping police catch thieves, but their main goal is to protect you from becoming a target in the first place.

“This time of year, people get more desperate for money,” South Charleston Police Officer Justin Bailes said. “They'll go to parking lots of stores, look in cars and see if they can find anything.”

It’s an easy task for thieves when many of the cars targeted aren't locked. Police say the ones that are often have purses and wallets in plain view.

“If you have to leave something in the car, hide it good in the trunk or something,” Bailes said.

If you do get into your car and find that your wallet is empty, police say you need to take action immediately.

First call your bank. Have all credit card numbers handy so they can be canceled immediately. Then call police. They'll need to get started as soon as possible before more damage is done.

The man police are searching for is about 5 feet, 8 inches tall, has a medium build and is bald. The woman is about 5 feet, 5 inches tall, has blond hair and has often been seen wearing a black hat.

If you have any information about who they are, you’re asked to call police.



ORIGINAL STORY
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Charleston Police are looking for the public's help in identifying two individuals who they believe are involved in a string of vehicle break-ins throughout the Charleston, South Charleston and Teays Valley areas.

According to a news release, a male and female have been targeting vehicles in the Charleston area and using stolen credit cards at area businesses.

All of the break-ins happened last month.

The woman has been described as approximately 5’5 to 5’8, slim build, sandy blond hair, casual dress and always wearing a black hat.

The male is described as approximately 5’7 to 5’9, medium build, bald with casual attire.

Police say the suspects have been mainly purchasing electronics with the stolen credit cards.

If anyone has information, please contact the Criminal Investigation Division at 304-348-6480.


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