RPD: Professional ID thieves tracked down, arrested in Redding

Julietta Smith / Camila Fernandez

Two women were arrested after a Redding woman, with the help of Redding Police Department (RPD), tracked down two suspected wallet and ID thieves who went on a shopping spree with stolen money.

On Friday, Elisa Bearden, 44, of Redding, reported that her wallet was stolen while she was shopping at TJ Maxx. Within an hour of the theft, Bearden began receiving notifications from her credit providers that her cards were being used at multiple Redding locations.

Bearden told police that she began going to each business as soon as she received the alerts, only to find the suspects had left before she arrived.

Bearden was at the Mt. Shasta Mall checking more locations when she learned the suspects were using her credit cards at Macy’s. Bearden responded to Macy’s and worked with loss prevention to find the suspects on video surveillance. It was at this time that she contacted the Redding Police Department.

Officer Jamie Rouland responded and with the assistance of loss prevention officers from both Macy’s and Mt. Shasta Mall security, located the two woman suspects at Foot Locker.

Police say that both suspects were uncooperative and had to be detained in handcuffs. A search of their belongings revealed they had numerous items stolen from Bearden. They also had a “booster bag” – a purse with false compartments and lined with aluminum foil, used to thwart electronic security devices. The purse also contained a powerful magnet, which is used by thieves to deactivate electronic security devices.

Both of the suspects had fake Puerto Rico ID cards, but through fingerprints one suspect was identified as Camila Fernandez, 25, of Los Angeles.

In all, Smith and Fernandez charged nearly $10,000 in credit card purchases within a two hour period. The suspects also stole approximately $6,000 in cash from Bearden’s wallet. Just over $1,200 was recovered by police. Aside from the missing cash and wallet, officers were able to recover all of the Bearden’s property.

Officers were also able to locate and search the suspect's vehicle. inside they found items used to create fake identifications as well as a large amount of recently purchased property.

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