LONGVIEW, WA (KPTV) – Longview police say there’s a new break in the Ocean Beach Chevron skimming case.
They’ve identified two suspects responsible for placing the device on the gas station’s card reader. Workers there have been feeling the fallout since it was installed three weeks ago.
“It definitely hurt us and we were upset and angry, and frustrated,” Michelle Minnier, a cashier, said. “We just wanted to get to the bottom of it.”
“We really saw a big decline in our customers,” Rami Singh, the owner at the Chevron, said.
Singh tells FOX 12 it took nearly two weeks before a customer noticed something was wrong.
“I was literally confused, you know, ‘What is this thing on my credit card machine?'” Singh said.
Initially, there were reports indicating the employees may have been behind it, but police say that’s not true.
“I just wanted to get it out there that there’s no way any of us would do anything,” Minnier said. “Rami is one of the nicest men I’ve ever met in my life.”
Minnier wasn’t working when the device was placed, but she did spend hours scanning surveillance videos for anything suspicious. Finally, she found a video of two men installing the device.
“I was shaking. I was excited,” Minnier said. “I was happy because I wanted them to be found.”
In the video, you can see it only takes a few seconds for the cashier to be distracted and then, the skimmer is on.
Rami and other employees say they used that card reader while the skimmer was installed, and they haven’t seen fraudulent charges or heard of anyone else who experienced them. It’s likely because the suspects hadn’t been able to retrieve the hard drive in the device, but police didn’t return FOX 12’s phone calls to confirm that.
“We want to work hard and make money,” Singh said. “Not do a scam and make money. I want to close this chapter and look forward to running the business and serve our loyal customers.”
If you recognize the two men in the video, call Longview police.
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By: Brenna Kelly
Feb 12th, 2020