Man arrested for $100K theft

Published 6:57 pm Tuesday, November 27, 2012

An Andalusia man was arrested Tuesday in Jefferson County for allegedly using a false identity to steal an estimated $100,000.

Lt. Mike Yarbrough with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office said 47-year-old Martin Bruce Harbison Jr. is wanted on a first-degree theft of property charge, stemming from an incident that occurred in Birmingham.

Law enforcement executed a search warrant on Harbison’s Sanford Road home just before lunch Tuesday.

Yarbrough said Harbison recently relocated to the area and that no one else is believed to be involved in the crime.

“We can’t really say a lot at this point as it is an ongoing investigation,” Yarbrough said. “I can say the investigation began in Birmingham six to eight months ago when Wells Fargo Bank contacted the sheriff’s office with paperwork that showed (Harbison) had stolen $100,000 of cash from an account by using a stolen identity.”

The bank was able to recoup some $47,000, he said.

Yarbrough said Harbison could also face additional charges, including identity theft, in other jurisdictions.

“Since (the JCSO) doesn’t have jurisdiction in this area, all information we find about local crimes will be turned over to the Andalusia Police Department,” he said.

Harbison was transported to the Jefferson County Jail and held under a $100,000 bond.

Law enforcement officers said Harbison has an extensive criminal history to include 28 bad check arrests and several arrests for identity theft and possession of forged instruments.