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Texas caller alerts Worthington police to alleged identity theft

Tomas-Juarez charged with forgery and perjury for allegedly using a false name and information on a Minnesota ID application.

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WORTHINGTON — A Worthington man was recently charged with a felony count of forgery, for reportedly using false writing for the purpose of identification. Erik Tomas-Juarez, 23, also faces one count of perjury for the use of a false name and information on a Minnesota ID card application.

The charges resulted after a Worthington police officer received a phone call from a man who reported his identity had been stolen and was being used by someone living in Worthington. The reporting party stated he had never lived outside of Texas, but that someone had obtained a Minnesota ID card with his name and date of birth. The address of the ID card was listed in Worthington.

The officer confirmed with the Minnesota Department of Motor Vehicles in Worthington that the ID card was issued with the reporting party’s information. The Texas Department of Public Safety verified the reporting party’s identity.

The officer then went to the address listed on the false ID card and spoke with Tomas-Juarez, who was identified with his Guatemala ID card. Though Tomas-Juarez initially denied using the stolen identity, he reportedly admitted to the officer he had used the information to obtain the ID card. He stated he was aware what he had done was wrong.

After being read his Miranda rights, Tomas-Juarez stated he received the documents from a co-worker in Wisconsin. He stated the worker approached him and asked if he wanted documents and he agreed.

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Tomas-Juarez was arrested and transported to the Nobles County Jail, where he was held for court. He was later released upon the Nobles County Attorney’s Office's request. He has now been issued a summons to appear in court, and his initial appearance is scheduled for May 11.

If convicted, Tomas-Juarez faces a maximum sentence of three years imprisonment and/or a $5,000 fine for the forgery charge, and five years imprisonment and/or a $10,000 fine for the perjury charge.

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Emma McNamee joined The Globe team in October 2021 as a reporter covering Crime & Courts, Politics, and the City beats. Born and raised in Duluth, Minn., McNamee left her hometown to attend school in Chicago at Columbia College. She graduated in 2021 with a degree in Multimedia Journalism, with a concentration in News & Feature Writing and a minor in Creative Writing.
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