Indiana Man Pleads Guilty to Counterfeiting at Dayton Dragon's Game
DAYTON – Kenneth Stopkotte, 53, of Unionville, Ind., pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to using counterfeit money.
Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Yvonne DiCristoforo, Special Agent in Charge, United States Secret Service, and Dayton Police Chief Richard S. Biehl announced the plea entered into before U.S. District Judge Thomas M. Rose.
According to the Statement of Facts in this case, Stopkotte was on supervised release following a federal conviction for bank larceny, money laundering and access device fraud when he purchased more than 200 counterfeit $20 bills off a website on the “dark web.”
In April 2018, Stopkotte traveled from his home in Unionville, Ind. to Dayton to attend a Dayton Dragons minor league baseball game. He carried with him most of the counterfeit money and made numerous purchases, including his ticket, food and beverage and other concessions. He had previously used some of the fake $20 bills at a sporting event in Arizona.
He used 41 of the counterfeit $20 bills at the Dayton Dragons game, receiving genuine currency back on his purchases. As investigators approached him at the game, he attempted to hide 54 other bills under a stadium refrigerator. Law enforcement officials also discovered Stopkotte hid $166 in genuine currency in the sole of his shoe, and he had additional genuine currency elsewhere in his clothing.
Investigators later found an additional 136 fake $20 bills hidden in the cover of a boat at his residence in Indiana.
Stopkotte’s iPhone history revealed numerous searches regarding counterfeiting and research on the dark web.
As part of his plea, Stopkotte will forfeit his phone, and the genuine cash he possessed will be forfeited or applied to his restitution obligation and court fines.
U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the investigation of this case by the Secret Service and Dayton Police, as well as First Assistant United States Attorney Vipal J. Patel, who is representing the United States in this case.
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