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March 13, 2017

Credit card skimming device found in Catlett

This security video shows three men working on the illegal skimmer, according to the sheriff’s office.
Would-be thieves installed a credit card “skimming” device on gas pumps at a Catlett service station, according to the Fauquier County Sheriff’s Office.

“An alert customer . . . detected damage to a gas pump over the weekend and contacted an employee” at Trenis Exxon, Sgt. James Hartman wrote in a press release. “The employee immediately inspected the pump and found possible credit card skimming equipment.”

Sheriff’s investigators responded and removed the device, Sgt. Hartman said.

The convenience store’s security system captured video of “three individuals at the business multiple times in the past week attempting to install the device,” the sergeant added.

The suspected skimming device affected only pumps 7 and 8.

“Detectives are working with Trenis Exxon to identify any customers who may have used these pumps,” Sgt. Hartman said. “Skimming devices installed on gas pumps have been a problem in the DMV (D.C.-Maryland-Virginia) area for some time. This is the second skimming device located in Fauquier County since October 2014.”

Attached to card readers, the devices typically stay place 24 to 48 hours, after which thieves retrieve them to get account information.

“Since the sheriff’s office is in possession of the device found by Trenis Exxon, it is doubtful any customers are affected,” Sgt. Hartman explained. “However, to be safe, detectives are working with Trenis Exxon management to assist any customers who can be identified.

“This is a good reminder to check your financial statements now and contact your financial institution for assistance if necessary.”

Authorities describe the Catlett suspects as three males in their late 20s to early 30s.

“The suspect who appears to install the device has long dark hair, a mustache and tan baseball hat,” Sgt. Hartman said. “All three appear to be wearing black clothing. The suspects are observed in four different vehicles at different times: a silver Jaguar, silver Nissan Altima, light colored Hyundai sedan and a dark in color four-door sedan.:

Detectives ask that anyone who can identify them men call the sheriff’s office at 540-347-3300. A caller can remain anonymous.
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