By Jennifer Siciliano Shayne
Due to the nature of the crime, there was nothing the victims could have done to protect themselves, said Detective David Donnelly of the Investigative Services Unit at Parkville's Precinct 8.
Acres A. Bradshaw, 18, of the 5000 block of Loch Raven Boulevard, was arrested and charged with identity theft, grand theft and a theft scheme after allegedly stealing the medical records of more than 20 Franklin Square patients in early March.
According to Donnelly, police became aware of the theft when a victim began to get phone calls about credit applications and purchases of wireless phones in her name.
"The victim ordered all three of her credit reports," Donnelly said.
An investigation traced recent charges to an address in the 5000 block of Loch Raven.
A search of Bradshaw's home April 14 by police revealed packing materials from Nextel wireless phones, as well as a stack of the forms that accompany lab blood tests for newborn babies.
Those forms contain the baby's blood sample results and the mother's name, address and Social Security number, Donnelly said.
The identity theft victim had been at Franklin Square to have her baby earlier in the month.
Bradshaw had been an employee of A-1 Stat Courier Service, which had been contracted by Franklin Square to take those results to the state health department.
In a statement Monday, Eric Conley, Franklin Square's vice president of operations, said the lab samples, now in police custody, would be forwarded to the state health department for testing.
Police are investigating whether Bradshaw had an accomplice, and are examining the evidence gathered from his home, including his computer, Donnelly said.
Bradshaw, who had two outstanding traffic warrants at the time of his arrest, was also charged with a theft scheme, Donnelly said.
That was because he allegedly "ordered the phones over several different dates," Donnelly said.
Two victims have filed charges, and police are trying to contact other people whose names were found in Bradshaw's apartment, Donnelly said.
Sgt. Chris Morgan, of Precinct 8's Community Action Team, which also worked on the investigation, called identity theft "one of the biggest up-and-coming crimes."
"It can be done anonymously," he said, "and it can be done across jurisdiction."
Morgan said one of the most important things a victim can do is to obtain credit reports from the three major credit companies _ Equifax, Experian and Trans Union _ to see if credit applications have been made in the victim's name.
Bradshaw was being held Monday at the Baltimore County Detention Center on $25,000 bail, according to police.
E-mail Jennifer Siciliano Shayne at email@example.com.
'It can be done anonymously and it can be done across jurisdiction.'
Police Sgt. Chris Morgan, Community Action Team