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Man allegedly forged almost $8,000 in stolen checks; police need your help to track him down

Posted 4/18/20

Lower Swatara police are searching for a Lycoming County man who allegedly forged nearly $8,000 in checks stolen in a burglary in February.

Police have charged Michael Lynn Andrus, 47, of Jersey …

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Man allegedly forged almost $8,000 in stolen checks; police need your help to track him down

Posted

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been updated. Click here.

Lower Swatara police are searching for a Lycoming County man who allegedly forged nearly $8,000 in checks stolen in a burglary in February.

Police have charged Michael Lynn Andrus, 47, of Jersey Shore, Pennsylvania, with 10 felony charges of forgery and 10 felony charges of access device fraud.

According to an affidavit filed with District Judge Michael J. Smith and provided to the Press & Journal by the Lower Swatara Police Department, Andrus has a “very extensive” criminal history including 10 prior arrests for forgery, 18 prior theft-related arrests, 2 arrests for burglary; and arrests for aggravated assault, resisting arrest and escape.

The amount cashed from stolen checks initially was thought to be around $4,000, as previously reported by the Press & Journal.

Police responded to a report of a burglary at a residence in the first block of Nelson Manor Lane at 11:56 a.m. Feb. 11. Police believe the burglary took place between Feb. 7 and 11.

The victim told police he did not know Andrus or authorized him to use his checks.

A checkbook was stolen during the burglary. Police previously told the Press & Journal that a .32 caliber pistol, television and remote, vacuum and loose change also were stolen. Those items had a value of about $1,000.

According to the affidavit, someone began cashing the checks at Citizens Banks on Feb. 12.

Ten total checks were cashed — totaling $7,725 — from the victim’s account.

According to the affidavit, detectives went to the Citizens Bank where three of the forged checks were cashed. Police wrote that the bank’s policy, all of the checks had a fingerprint on them from a man who identified himself as Andrus.

Surveillance from the banks shows Andrus cashing all of the checks. The other checks were cashed at banks in Lower Paxton Township, Harrisburg and Paxtonia.

Police wrote that some of the stolen checks had “kitchen remodel” and “tree service” written in the memo on the check, but the victim told police he never hired Andrus to do any work for him. 

Police said Andrus is about 5 feet, 11 inches tall and weighs about 210 pounds with an athletic build, and brown hair and eyes. He has a small tattoo on his right shoulder and a small letter tattoo on upper right back. He might have more facial hair or a beard and longer hair than shown in his mugshot.

He has used the alias John Newman.

Anyone with information is urged to call the police or submit an anonymous tip through Crimewatch at www.lowerswatarapd.org.