These men were arrested in connection with a skimmer found on a pump at a Dover gas station: (left) Adrid Gamez-Ferdinand, 39, of Miami, Florida; (center) George-San Millan, 46, of Austin, Texas; (right) Michel Olivera-Fernandez, 30, of Lousiville, Kentucky.
New Philadelphia, Ohio - Tuscarawas County Sheriff's officials say charges are pending against three men suspected of placing a skimming device on a pump at a Dover Township gas station.
Detective Sgt. Adam Fisher says deputies responded Friday morning to the BP gas station on North Tuscarawas Avenue after employees called to report one of their pumps appeared to have been tampered with. He says officers arrived on scene and located an electronic device hooked up to the pump.
“They were doing their daily pump inspections and had located some kind of electronic skimming device in one of the pumps and a key broken off in the pump access door," he says.
Fisher says the men believed to be responsible for placing the device were apprehended later that afternoon after employees called back to report a suspicious vehicle in their parking lot.
"In the afternoon about a quarter till 3, the same suspect vehicle and suspects were observed to once again be in the parking lot," he says. "Law enforcement was contacted, a traffic stop was initiated, and we ultimately made contact with those individuals."
Fisher says the suspects include a 39-year-old from Florida, a 46-year-old from Texas and a 30-year-old who was unable to provide a current address. The men are being held at the Tuscarawas County Jail pending formal charges.
Fisher says they believe the suspects placed the device sometime Thursday evening. He says that at this point it doesn’t appear very many people were affected.
"There were only six vehicles that were observed to have used the same pump from the time the skimmer was placed until the time the skimmer was recovered, so we don’t expect or anticipate that there was a lot of loss," he says.
Fisher says the technology being used in these devices is always changing making them increasingly more difficult to spot. He says the best way for people can protect themselves is by going inside to pay for their fuel.
"Prepay or purchase any kind of fuel inside of the gas station and avoid using credit card machines on the pumps themselves," he says.
Fisher says people who believe their information may have been compromised should call the Tuscarawas County Sheriff’s Office at 330-339-2000 to file a report.
STACEY CARMANY, TUSCO TV