WESTPORT — A 29-year-old man from Blackwood, New Jersey was charged with identity theft after allegedly stealing a phone in an airport, police said.
On April 17 at 7:10 p.m. a complainant responded to police headquarters and reported he was the victim of a larceny. According to police the victim said while traveling in California his cell phone had been stolen in an airport. A few hours after the theft of his phone, he became aware $15,472.31 had been transferred out of his Coinbase account; an application in which crypto-currency is managed.
Police learned the funds from the account were converted into dollars and then moved into a PayPal account. Police said an extensive investigation by the detective bureau ultimately led to a suspect — Darren Carter. Among various financial transactions records allegedly connecting Carter to the crime, police said he additionally sent an apology e-mail intended for the victim to the investigating detective.
According to the police in the message Carter not only confessed to taking the victim’s phone, but additionally admitted to transferring the victim’s funds into a personal account. The stolen $15,472.31 was recovered from the PayPal and returned to the victim, police said. An arrest warrant was then prepared and granted for Carter.
Carter was ultimately taken into custody by law enforcement in the state of New Jersey in connection with the active warrant. On Aug. 26 detectives traveled to Salem County Correctional Facility in Woodstown, New Jersey to take custody of Carter. He was then extradited back to Connecticut and charged with identity theft in the first degree.
Carter was unable to post $150,000 bond and was transported to state Superior Court in Norwalk on Aug. 27 for arraignment.