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Morganton man arrested for $1,700 in counterfeit money

By Elisabeth Arriero
earriero@charlotteobserver.com

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FATZ Restaurant, 975 Blowing Rock Blvd., Lenoir

A Morganton man has been arrested for possessing nearly $2,000 in counterfeit money and trying to use some of it at a local restaurant, Lenoir Police said.

Thomas Gregory Edmisten, 58, of 4395 Piney Road in Morganton, was arrested and charged Friday with felony possession of five or more counterfeit instruments and felony attempting to obtain property by false pretense.

Police said he tried to pay for some food using counterfeit currency at FATZ Restaurant on Blowing Rock Boulevard in Lenoir.

Restaurant employees called police when they realized the $100 bill was fake.

When police arrived at the restaurant and interviewed Edmisten, they found 17 counterfeit $100 bills in his possession.

He was arrested on an unrelated outstanding warrant from Burke County for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

After police interviewed him again, Edmisten received additional charges related to the counterfeit money.

He was placed in the Caldwell County Detention Center under a $20,000 secured bond.

His first appearance in Lenoir district court is scheduled for Monday.

Lenoir Police are now working with the U.S. Secret Service and expect more arrests to be made in connection with counterfeit currency in the area.

Anyone with information of counterfeit currency manufacture and distribution is asked to contact the Lenoir Police Department at 828-757-2100 or Lenoir/Caldwell County Crime Stoppers at 828-758-8300.

Arriero: 704-804-2637; On Twitter: @earriero
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