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Police: At Least 12 Victims Caught Up in Check Forgery Operation

Bryant Jeffrey Evenson and Matthew Kenneth Cantley were running a forgery operation out of a local hotel room, according to investigators.

Discoveries made during a routine shoplifting call in Eagan led to the arrest of two Dakota County men accused of running a serial check forging operation out of a hotel room.

Bryant Jeffrey Evenson, a 27-year-old Apple Valley resident, and Matthew Kenneth Cantley, a 25-year-old Hastings man, both face one felony count of identity theft, one felony count of possession of stolen or counterfeit checks and one count of misdemeanor theft following their arrest on April 23. Cantley also faces one felony count of possession of a controlled substance.

If convicted on the identity theft charge, both Evenson and Cantley could face a maximum of 20 years in prison and $100,000 in fines.

Eagan police caught up to Evenson and Cantley on April 23, when the employees of a department store called to report that two men had left the store wearing pairs of stolen shoes.

Police found both men outside the store entrance and identified the pair as Cantley and Evenson, according to a criminal complaint filed by the Dakota County Attorney's Office. While searching Cantley, an officer found a stolen checkbook listing "J.D." and "R.D." as account holders—and a driver's license application in J.D.'s name. The officer also found .38 grams of a methamphetamine on Cantley, according to the complaint.

Police made contact with J.D., who told officers that the checkbook was stolen from the inside of a parked car on April 16. Inside the stolen checkbook, police found carbon copies of three checks written after April 16 for a total of $538.18.

Police also searched Evenson at the time of arrest, and allegedly found another stolen checkbook—this one listed to "J.W.," another victim. Officers also found a driver's license application receipt in the victim's name on Evenson, according to the complaint. When contacted, J.W. told police $1,800 in unauthorized charges had been made on the account.

Police also searched a hotel room where Cantley and Evenson were staying. There, they allegedly found drug paraphernalia, two printers and scanners and blank check stock. Officers also discovered a series of counterfeit checks and more driver's license application receipts bearing the name of at least nine other victims.

A woman who was also staying in the hotel room allegedly told police that Bryant was manufacturing counterfeit driver's licenses so that he and Cantley could present them as identification when writing checks.

The men would then purchase tools at local hardware stores and sell them to friends, the woman told police.

angela April 30, 2013 at 05:17 PM
Seriously??? Do these jackasses realize they aren't just taking people's money, they are also stealing lives..not to mention how the victims will have to go through headache after headache straightening out their accounts with banks???
Sue Lorance May 03, 2013 at 11:12 PM
It looks like that SOB Matthew Cantley is finally going to prison. Payback is a bitch!!! This guy strangled and hogtied me and stole mom's car when he was 16. Because of his age he only did time in juvie. He was staying at a juvenile treatment facility where I was working at the time when it happened. The other guy was 18 and did 2 years prison time and is now a productive citizen of the human race
Frankandbeans June 17, 2013 at 08:34 PM
I knew bryant back in the day, he was a funny guy had well known personal issues though, i know through the grapevine he got knee deep in hard dope and im convinced if he was off of it at this time, he probably wouldnt of gotten involved with this kind of behavior. I hope after he gets out, it cleans him up. Dont know the other dude, but sorry to hear that sue.

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