White Rock’s Brighton MacDonald says identity theft has haunted him for the past two years, most recently on May 1, when he was arrested in South Surrey. (Aaron Hinks photo)

Roadside arrest for B.C. man whose ID was stolen two years ago

White Rock’s Brighton MacDonald says he continues to be haunted by identity theft

It’s been two years since Brighton MacDonald’s truck was stolen and recovered, but the White Rock man continues to be haunted by the crime.

Last week, the 24-year-old found himself in handcuffs for 30 minutes after police took him briefly into custody, apparently believing he was breaching a driving ban.

The officer who pulled him over on 176 Street at 24 Avenue May 1 “asked me my name and I told him my name, and he says, ‘No, what’s your other name?’” MacDonald told Peace Arch News.

“He pulls me out in the middle of rush hour, he put handcuffs on me and tossed me in the back of a cop car.”

Surrey RCMP Cpl. Elenore Sturko confirmed Wednesday that MacDonald’s name “has been used as an alias by another individual who is known to police.”

“After doing police checks, the officers were able to confirm (MacDonald’s) identity,” Sturko said.

MacDonald said police told him “they essentially were trying to make sure I wasn’t (this other individual).” And, he was told, a note has now been put on file “to make sure that this inconvenience doesn’t happen again.”

“Is that enough for me? I don’t know. I want them to catch the guy,” he said.

According to police and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, identity theft can occur through a variety of channels, and cause victims all manner of grief, from financial loss to difficulty obtaining credit.

READ MORE: ‘Sophisticated’ mail theft, fraud operation uncovered in Cloverdale, say RCMP

MacDonald said he’s been fortunate so far that he hasn’t been stuck with any unexpected bills as a result of his truck’s theft. He said the Ford F250 was found two days after it was stolen, none the worse for wear, save for the fact his insurance papers and wallet were missing.

Evidence the documents were used for nefarious purposes started to appear about six months later, and included contact from New Westminster police, who found someone carrying MacDonald’s credit card.

Fraudulent bank and cellphone accounts, and even evidence of a Costco membership followed.

“I received a bunch of stuff in the mail. I received a debit card… for an account I never opened. I received letters from Costco saying it’s time to renew your membership, and I don’t have one.”

MacDonald said he has contacted agencies including credit bureau Equifax to report the theft, and his credit has been “red-flagged” as a result.

He said he wants others to be aware of what can happen, and the lasting impact identity theft can have.

“Two years later, to have that incident happen on (May 1),” he said.

“I was so blown away by what was happening.”

Anyone who suspects they are a victim of identity theft is advised to contact police, their financial institution and credit card company, as well as Equifax (1-800-465-7166), TransUnion Canada (1-877-525-3823) and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (1-888-495-8501). For more information, visit www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca



tholmes@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Cache Creek landfill extension set for September completion

Project has been delayed due to wildfires and floods over past two years

Drag races set to return for Graffiti Days weekend

Annual event features old favourites like the smoke show, and new events like a drive-in movie

Bonaparte River fishway, Thompson steelhead among projects awarded grant funding

More than $9 million will help 170 fish and wildlife projects around B.C.

Wellness clinics provide free, drop-in health information

New service in Clinton helps patients manage their health care and stay out of hospital

New airline regulations bring compensation for tarmac delays, over-bookings

Some of the new regulations will roll out in July, while others are expected for December.

Scheer says it would take Conservatives five years to balance budget

Scheeraccused the Liberal government of spending $79.5 billion of previously unbudgeted funds

B.C. man, 30, arrested for driving his parents’ cars while impaired twice in one day

The Vancouver-area man was arrested after officers caught him driving impaired twice in one day

More than half of Canadians support ban on handguns, assault rifles: study

Divide between rural and urban respondents in latest Angus Reid Institute public opinion study

Spring rain needed as B.C. sees one of the lowest snowpack levels in 40 years

Snowpack levels in B.C. recorded on May 15 were similar to those in 2015 and 2016

Theresa May to quit as party leader June 7, sparking race for new PM

The new Conservative leader will become prime minister without the need for a general election

B.C. man who fell off cliff returns there to rescue eagle from vulture attack

Nanaimo’s James Farkas, who broke his hip in a fall, saves eagle on same beach months later

Raptors beat Bucks 105-99 to move within 1 game of NBA Finals

Leonard scores 35 as Toronto takes 3-2 series lead over Milwaukee

Municipalities protest after B.C. declares marijuana crops ‘farm use’

UBCM president seeks answers in letter to John Horgan government

Most Read