A man in Lakeland, Florida, has been charged with criminal use of personal identification after he allegedly attempted to keep his job while in prison by forging a letter from a police officer.
Marco Sullivan was arrested in late July for resisting arrest and on an outstanding warrant from Orange County, Florida, according to Fox 13.
While he was jailed, he and his girlfriend, Martisha Wilson, allegedly attempted to prevent his employer, Reddy Ice, a packaged ice company, from finding out he had been arrested, per WFTV. At first, Wilson reportedly told authorities that Sullivan had the flu and could not work.
But when Sullivan realized he would likely be in jail for several months, he and Wilson hatched a plan, police told WFLA. Wilson downloaded the letterhead of another police department in Polk County, then wrote a message to Reddy Ice, claiming that Sullivan was working with the police for several months and should be excused from work, according to police.
However, Reddy Ice registered an inquiry with Polk County police to determine if the letter was genuine, and from there, it did not take authorities long to figure out the letter was a forgery.
For one, Polk County police said, the letter was signed by a Mike Singleton, head of the ATF investigation unit. No one by that name is employed at the department, and it has no such unit, per the Ledger.
For another, the letter was riddled with typos, including usages of “do to” instead of “due to” and “not able to enclosed no farther information.” The letter was also almost entirely without any punctuation.
“Here's a bit of advice - if you're going to try to dupe someone into thinking you're working with law enforcement, you should probably use a real name and maybe not have misspelled words,” Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd told WFTV.
The extra charge has been added to Sullivan’s docket, and there is currently a warrant out for Wilson’s arrest.