Auto dealer charged with forging police officer's signature - WNEM TV 5

Auto dealer charged with forging police officer's signature

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An auto dealer has been charged with forging a police officer’s signature on vehicle safety inspections.

Secretary of State Ruth Johnson announced that Barry Church, president of Church & Sons Auto Sales in Burton, is facing 14 felony charges after allegedly submitting falsified forms to a Genesee County Secretary of State Office.

The forms certified that salvaged cars had been inspected by law enforcement to ensure they were not stolen or contained stolen parts.

According to Johnson, Church purchased the vehicles with model years 2007 to 2011 in Ontario, which had deemed the vehicles unfit to drive on the road. Auto dealers often buy salvage cars at auction with the idea of repairing them for resale or using the parts to repair other cars. Before the vehicles can return to the road, the cars must pass a thorough inspection conducted by a police officer.

Johnson said that the false inspection reports were spotted when a Secretary of State employee noticed that several inspection forms had a police officer’s photocopied signature.

Church is said to have admitted to a Secretary of State fraud investigator that he had signed the forms as a police officer.

Church was bound over for trial in Genesee County Circuit Court earlier this month.

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