A man using the identity of another individual who has been deceased for almost a year was arrested last week on charges of identity theft and may soon face extradition to Kentucky to face charges in a different alleged crime.
Pasco County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Jeffrey Mirick on October 17 on allegations that he has been passing himself off to others as Gary Ridgeway. Police say the true Gary Ridgeway, who was African American, passed away in November last year and, per investigators, Mirick, who is Caucasian, has been using his identity to open credit accounts and obtain jobs.
Mirick was stopped by deputies last month after he and a female companion were accused of using a stolen check in an attempt to purchase a vehicle. Allegedly about to take flight from the county, Mirick was confronted by deputies questioning his identity. They say he produced a myriad of documents ostensibly proving him to be Ridgeway, including pay stubs from a construction job in New Port Richey.
However, upon investigation, police determined that Mirick was not of the same race as Ridgeway and arrested him. Subsequently police say they learned that he opened a credit card account under Ridgeway’s identity, compiled several charges, then attempted to open new accounts, but unsuccessfully. Mirick, using Ridgeway’s identity, also allegedly obtained his position at the construction job referenced above using Ridgeway’s identity and collected two paychecks before being fired.
Mirick, originally from St. Louis, was booked into Pasco County Jail on charges of possession of a stolen credit card, two charges relating to identity theft, making a false claim to worker’s comp, using a false name while under arrest, burglary, and obtaining property via fraud. Police say he took on Ridgeway’s identity in an effort to flee burglary charges in Kentucky, where he may soon be extradited to face charges.
The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.