WEST PITTSTON -- The man suspected of passing bad checks for expensive items at several hardware stores in at least three counties turned himself in on Wednesday.
Anthony Fazio, 40, is facing theft charges in Lackawanna County and is expected to face more in Luzerne and Schuylkill counties.
Fazio faces felony theft charges for allegedly writing bad checks at Justus True Value near Clarks Summit and another hardware store in Moscow to buy expensive power tools and equipment.
He was arraigned on those charges in Lackawanna County and police in Luzerne and Schuylkill counties say he could face the same charges there.
“My understanding is that he is hitting a lot of these mom and pop hardware stores,” said West Pittston Police Chief Mike Turner.
Turner says he plans to file charges against Fazio for passing bad checks at Driscoll's Home Center.
Owner Dennis Driscoll said Fazio came into the store on November 1 then returned the next day, both times buying big-ticket items, totaling roughly $1,000.
“He initially bought a generator then came back the next day and bought a pressure washer and some power tools,” said Driscoll.
Dallas Police want Fazio for writing a bad check at Hilbert's Equipment and Welding.
Owner Larry Hilbert says Fazio bought a $1,400 snow thrower and paid with a bad check.
“I'm so glad that he turned himself in because our police force in this area, they would have certainly got him,” said Hilbert.
“You know we expressed that early on when we notified the police that it happened here, that we were concerned that might do this to others, so it's a relief to hear that he's caught,” said Driscoll.
Police suspect Fazio also bounced checks at hardware stores in Mountain Top and Shenandoah.
“When stuff like this happens, it really bothers us because these mom and pop stores are what keep us alive and keep us going,” said Turner.
Fazio is free on bail. He is scheduled to be back in Lackawanna County court next week.