Trio accused of loan scam in three cities

March 31 – THOMASVILLE – A months-long Thomas County Sheriff’s Office investigation resulted in a guilty plea and two arrests.

According to Captain Tim Watkins, Chief Sheriff’s Office Investigator, Shadricka Montreal Howard, 29, Dixie, tricked people into impersonating her mother and grandfather when applying for the loan.

“She went to loan companies in Valdosta and Moultrie and got loans on behalf of her real mother and grandfather,” Watkins said.

Howard Quitman’s roommate Shayolana Bridges 29, Valdosta, pretended to be her mother in Valdosta and got loans totaling $ 10,000. Willie James Whitehead, 52, Valdosta, posed as Howard’s grandfather and got $ 19,500 in loans.

Bridges, who was arrested in January, pleaded guilty to fraud and identity tampering in Thomas County last week. She was ordered to pay compensation. Bridges is being held in Valdosta, where she faces further charges in this case.

Howard and Whitehead were sentenced to Thomas County jail Tuesday.

Watkins said Howard and Whitehead were using fake driver’s licenses, adding that the activity started in December 2020.

Bridges and Whitehead gave Howard the money, according to Watkins.

“Each time, she paid them less than $ 1,000 to pose as her family,” Watkins said.

Howard and Whitehead are each charged with three counts of infringement.

“They cashed the loan checks here,” the investigator said.

The nearly $ 30,000 obtained in fraudulent loans has not been accounted for.

The loan companies lost the money they loaned to suspects.

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