Siblings charged for allegedly working under fraudulent social security numbers
This week a brother and sister were arrested for synthetic identity deception and forgery in Elkhart County after deputies got a tip. Now the Sheriff’s Department is asking for more crime tips.
The Elkhart County Sheriff Brad Rodgers says the Facebook post is the same as a post about a robbery or another crime. The department is asking for community tips to prevent or stop crime from happening in the community.
Sheriff Rogers adds that asking for the tips is a practical solution but it is to a problem that is not so simple in real-life.
“We are empathetic to the plight of some of these people that are trying to make a living and so on but the legislature created the law that it’s against the law to use somebody else’s social security number,” says Sheriff Rodgers.
Fraud, forgery and deception are all felony offenses. That is why Sheriff Rogers says not matter who or why someone is committing the crime he and his deputies have a duty to stop it.
“The inmates asked me what are you in here for and I said for being illegal and working,” says Candida Rosete an undocumented worker who lives in Elkhart.
On Tuesday Candida and her brother Ismael Rosete were working at a business in Elkhart.
The Sheriff’s Department received a tip on Ismael and checked his social security number and it did not match his identity.
After Candida started asking question her social security number was checked as well and found to be fraudulent.
Five other undocumented workers like them have been arrested in the month of September for similar cases.
Candida and her brother were brought to the United States by their parents as toddlers and have not been able to get citizenship.
“The system for me has not worked. My dad applied for us in 1993 for us to become residence. He passed away in 2009. There’s a 12 year waiting period for Mexicans. So how are we supposed to not work not do anything if you make us wait 12 years,” says Candida.
Her arrest along with her brother’s was posted on the Elkhart County Sheriff Department’s Facebook page asking the community to turn in tips on similar cases.
“This is just one of the many things that we see it’s not a particular focus it’s not a new task force that we have started it’s not even a change of policy,” says Sheriff Rogers.
Sheriff Rogers provided data for the numbers of fraud arrest this year compared to last. This year to date, there have been 243 arrest and comparing the same time frame last year there were 273.
Some in the community are concerned the call to action could lead to racial profiling.
“We want to make sure that our officers are not doing that and of course if there is any evidence that indicated that we do have someone thing I want to know about it,” says Sheriff Rodgers.
Both law enforcement and undocumented workers say they just want to do their jobs but without immigration reform the two will continue to work against each other.
“It’s at the prosecutors level and also at the state legislature level to kind of work that out and let continue to seek answers to some of the reform that’s needed out there,” says Sheriff Rodgers.
A local Latino community group that meets monthly will be meeting on Monday at 6:30pm at LaCasa in Goshen. The meeting will briefly touch upon the issue of fraud in the Latino community and is open to the public to voice their concerns.