Check fraud leaves woman out $500 and behind on rent

ByMichael Finney and Randall Yip via KGO logo
Friday, December 28, 2018
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A tenant whose rent check is automatically debited each month received a delinquency notice. Police concluded she was a victim of check fraud.

HAYWARD, Calif. (KGO) -- Nancy Perfetto and her pastor play with their feline friend, Chaddy.

Back in April, Nancy received a notice from her landlord that she missed a rent payment back in 2017. Pastor Sue Kuipers, from Hayward, has financial responsibility for Nancy and couldn't figure out what had happened.

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"It didn't make sense because I have her on automatic bill pay," said Kuipers.

Perfetto was also a bit confused about what happened.

"Just don't understand losing $500."

Kuipers reached out to Bank of America requesting copies of checks charged to Perfetto's account. She said she finally received it on July 31.

They received a copy of a rent check for the amount of $481 made out on June 20 to Walker Landing, the company that processes her landlord's rent checks. Another check dated May 19 for the exact same amount as her subsidized rent-- $481-- only this one is made out to an individual, James Krunich.

This also happens to be the same month her landlord believes Perfetto missed her rent payment.

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"If you look at a regular one it says Walking Landing, the address. This one, it looked like it was whited out and then they typed over another name and address," said Kuipers.

Kuipers suspects someone stole Perfetto's rent check, substituted their own name and then cashed it.

The Hayward Police Department agrees.

In his report, an officer wrote, "I examined the check and noticed it was altered to pay to the order of James Krunich. Kuipers informed me that she has no idea who Krunich is."

Kuipers also filed a report with Bank of America, but she says the bank didn't seem anxious to investigate it.

"I couldn't get them to do that. They kept switching me from department to department," she said.

By September, Kuipers says Bank of America dismissed her complaint. That's when she contacted 7 On Your Side and we contacted the bank. The money was returned to Perfetto's account that day.

Bank of America told us, "once we were able to validate that the issued check was altered, we worked with the customer and intended payee to get the amount credited."

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The bank is glad the matter is resolved.

"I only watch Channel 7 On Your Side. I never thought I'd be a recipient," said Perfetto.

Take a look at more stories by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Sidehere.