Brownwood police released details Tuesday on the arrests of three alleged fuel pump “skimmers” at a convenience store Sunday morning.
The three suspects — two Austin residents and a Dallas resident — remained in the Brown County Jail Tuesday in lieu of bonds of $100,000 each, jail records state.
According to an email from Brownwood police:
Officers were dispatched at 9:10 a.m. Sunday to the Food Plaza store at 2800 Highway 377 South for suspicious activity.
Store personnel believed several suspects parked in a vehicle at one of the gas pumps were tampering with or placing a “skimming” device on the pump.
Skimming devices are covertly installed on gas pumps and ATM machines by criminal suspects to collect credit card information from customers. This information is then used to compromise the customer’s account leading to unauthorized charges.
Upon arrival, officers made contact with three suspects who were in a 2007 Dodge truck. During the investigation, property including a laptop, cell phones, credit cards, a drill and other evidence was seized. The investigation and evidence seized confirmed a skimming device scheme was taking place.
Police identified the suspects, who were charged with unlawful use of a criminal instrument and engaging in organized criminal activity, as Rolando Dominguez, 31, of Austin; Livan Delgado, 31, of Dallas; and Rose Patricia Hernandez, 36, of Austin.
Brownwood police are working with agencies including the United States Secret Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Brown County District Attorney’s Office and local financial institutions in an ongoing investigation.
“Skimmers are a common fraud scheme occurring across the United States,” Brownwood Police Chief Terry Nichols said via email.
“Unfortunately we are not immune from this type of crime in Brownwood and Brown County. We are very fortunate, however, that we live in a community where citizens will speak up when they see something suspicious and recognize abnormal behavior.”
Anyone who has questions or doubts about whether their credit card has been compromised should contact the financial institution who issued the card, police said. Anyone who believes they are a victim and unauthorized charges have been made against their account should contact law enforcement, police said.