Lake Charles, LA –
Starting September 17, Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office Financial Crimes detectives started receiving reports of the unauthorized use of food stamp cards in the Lake Charles area.
During the initial investigations, it has been determined the EBT cards have been compromised by skimming devices located at self-check stations at grocery stores in the area. As of September 26, CPSO detectives are investigating cases for 29 victims, for a total loss of over $14,000. Detectives have also learned additional cases, over 30, have occurred in the Oakdale area.
“We are currently in the initial phases of these investigations and no arrests have been made at this time,” stated Sheriff Tony Mancuso. “If you or your family members receive SNAP EBT benefits, you are URGED to change your PIN number immediately. The Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services has notified benefit holders, although not all households have taken action and changed their PIN. DCFS is asking everyone to monitor their account daily by using the LifeInCheck app or by calling the number on the back of the card.”
If you believe you are a victim, please contact CPSO at (337) 491-3605 or DCFS at (225) 342-3970.
CPSO Detective John Melton is the lead investigator on these cases.