A police officer went to a Raleigh, NC apartment Sunday morning, March 26, 2017, to arrest a man for missing a court appearance, a routine weekend chore for police. That led to a marijuana arrest, however, and that led to two people being charged with having forged credit cards, counterfeit money and equipment for making bogus cards.
It began, Officer J.C. Gwinn said in asking for a search warrant for the apartment, when he knocked on the door at 4620 Tournament Drive, looking for Rodney Isaac Lewis.
A large man who said he was Leroy Jenkins opened the door a few inches, Gwinn told a magistrate, and a marijuana odor came out from behind him. The man would not show any identification, however, Gwinn said, and he denied that what Gwinn smelled was marijuana. He also said Lewis was not home.
Gwinn disagreed about the marijuana and went into the apartment based on the smell, calling for another officer to secure the area, he wrote. He said he saw a marijuana grinder on a table and wrappers used to make marijuana blunts, and he headed for the Wake County magistrates’ office on Hammond Road to ask for the search warrant.
With a search warrant in hand, Gwinn went through the apartment, and then the day got more complicated.
While seizing a few grams of marijuana and a digital scale, Gwinn said he also saw a machine used to read information from credit cards and write data to them, blank cards and counterfeit money printed on letter-size paper. That sent him back to the magistrates’ office to ask for a second search warrant.
According to a inventory attached to that second warrant, returned to court Sunday night along with the first one, police seized the card-reading machine, packs of various kinds of credit and debit cards and gift cards, 41 pages of counterfeit $5, $10 and $20 currency, a computer, a printer and several phones.
Jailed pending court appearances were Lewis, 31, whose address is listed as the apartment; Alexis Nicollette Freeman, 23, who said she lives at the apartment, and William Tyler Freeman, 19, who lives there as well.
Lewis was charged with two counts of having five or more counterfeit instruments, one count for the credit and gift cards and one for the printed bills. He also was charged with forgery of an instrument, financial card theft, theft of card data by using a card-scanning device and financial card forgery. And with failing to appear in court when he was supposed to.
Alex Freeman was charged with card theft with a scanning device, financial card forgery, possession of five of more counterfeit instruments for the printed currency and forgery of an instrument.
William Freeman, the man in the doorway, was charged with misdemeanor marijuana possession, possession of drug paraphernalia and with resisting a public officer.
All were being held at the Wake County Detention Center pending court appearances. It was not known if the Freemans are related.