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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

No parking on Thain Road, Shawnigan police remind

Warmer weather brings complaints near Cobble Hill quarry

No lifeguards this summer for Cowichan’s Fuller Lake, Arbutus Park; Crofton pool closed

Fears of risk to health and safety during COVID-19 pandemic to blame

You’ll have to pay to get on the bus again in Cowichan

Beginning June 1, fare collection and front door boarding started again

39 caught speeding through Cowichan school zones

On June 1, North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP conducted speed enforcement in several school zones

Lake Cowichan firefighters douse blaze at Mayo Road

Sahtlam called in for mutual aid in abandoned shop and motorhome

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Murder charge upgraded in George Floyd case, 3 other cops charged

Floyd’s family and protesters have repeatedly called for criminal charges against all four officers

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

Bank of Canada keeps key interest rate target on hold at 0.25%

Central bank now expects GDP to decline between 10 and 20 per cent compared with the fourth quarter of 2019

Friendly Cove and Kyuquot will remain closed until further notice

Transition of other B.C. communities will be monitored before a decision to ease restrictions

Racist incident shocks Vancouver Island First Nation

Port Alberni RCMP investigating after video shows truck wheeling through Tseshaht territory

Gold River organizes a shop local initiative to creatively boost economy

Local purchases can earn shoppers $200 gift certificates to be spent on businesses within Gold River

Young killer whale untangles itself from trap line off Nanaimo shore

DFO marine mammal rescue unit was en route as whale broke free from prawn trap line

Most Read