Patient Arrested in Dental Chair for Attempted Identity Theft

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While sitting in the dentist’s chair to get an expensive procedure, a woman was arrested in DeKalb County for committing identity theft.

Police entered Fresh Dental in Chamblee and arrested Martina Pickett, of LaGrange GA.

Instead of getting caps on her teeth, an expensive procedure, she got put in handcuffs and taken away.

In police body cam video, an officer is heard asking Pickett about her real identity while in the dentist’s chair.

“You came here under your name? Are you sure about that?” the officer asked.

“No. What’s going on?” Pickett asked.

“Go ahead and stand up for me real quick,” the officer answered before placing Pickett in handcuffs.

Chamblee police say Pickett went online and purchased a stranger’s name and care credit information to pay for a pricey cosmetic dental procedure.

After they read Pickett her rights, she admitted to the scheme.

“I just bought the care credit from her, I don’t know about this. I just bought it to get my teeth fixed,” Pickett said on camera.

Channel 2 Action News spoke with a cyber security expert, learning how easy it is for anyone to steal credit information from the dark web.

Cyber threat researcher Willis McDonald, who specializes in identity fraud, said there are ads on social media that offer identities for a price.

On Friday, McDonald showed Washington an ad offering someone’s credit profile for sale.

“Purchased a full package of somebody’s identity,” McDonald said. “Their Social Security number, date of birth, full name, addresses, previous addresses, and likely credit card numbers like the care credit.”

Still, McDonald said there are ways to keep your information safe.

“Monitoring your credit card bills. Making sure there’s no purchases on those cards that you don’t recognize,” he said.

As for Pickett, Chamblee police charged her with financial transaction card theft and identity fraud, big-time trouble for pricey new teeth.

“I wanted to get my teeth did and they gave me a deal,” Pickett said on camera. “I paid $1,000 for it.”

Penalties for this type of crime vary, but in Georgia, someone convicted of financial transaction card theft can face up to five years in prison, and hefty fines.

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