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Mail sent to old address leads to ID theft, police say

A man faces felony charges alleging he stole the identity of a woman who’d lived in his apartment before him.

Richard Harold Churchill, 35, is charged with two felony counts of identity theft on accusations he successfully opened one credit card and attempted to open another in the name of a woman who’d lived in his Ashland apartment before he moved in, according to a court document filed by Medford police in the case.

When Medford police arrested Churchill early Wednesday evening on a misdemeanor warrant, police found a First Premier Bank credit card in the victim’s name, according to court and Jackson County Jail records.

Upon further investigation, the woman told police she’d received mail from Chase Bank about a credit card application she didn’t submit.

An Ashland police investigation apparently began the first week of May, when Churchill allegedly attempted to cash two checks mailed to the woman’s old address in late April, court documents indicate. The woman told Medford police she’d learned through that investigation that Churchill moved into her old apartment.

Further details about the Ashland case were sealed in court records. Court records only list a Medford address in the 600 block of Benson Street for Churchill.

Churchill made his initial court appearance Thursday in Jackson County Circuit Court on the two felony identity theft charges.

As of Saturday afternoon, Churchill remained held in the Jackson County Jail on $50,000 bail on the identity theft counts, a misdemeanor charge of driving while suspended, and on out-of-county warrants charging him with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, first-degree forgery, first-degree theft and identity theft.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or nmorgan@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MTCrimeBeat.

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