Sheriff Joe Arpaio becomes victim of credit card theft - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Sheriff Joe Arpaio becomes victim of credit card theft

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PHOENIX -

He's used to catching criminals, not being a victim. The self-proclaimed toughest sheriff in America has had his credit card number ripped off. Sheriff Joe Arpaio's credit card number appears to have been stolen.

The sheriff says he got a call from his credit card company about some strange charges in Chicago. He says he hasn't been to Chicago in years.

"Last time I was in Chicago was when I was a young federal agent and married my wife in 1957. I don't think they had credit cards way back."

These days, the sheriff says he uses his Discover card all the time.

"I could have gone into any restaurant here and used my card and someone could have skimmed it. Took the number and used it in Chicago," said Arpaio.

The $291 charge was incurred at a grocery store in Chicago. The credit card company thought it was odd and alerted the sheriff Sunday.

"I am not the only victim. I am sure that many many more victims are out there."

Across the country, credit card fraud happens every day. It can be as simple as someone digging through the trash and writing down the numbers -- or as high tech as hacking into online accounts and selling the card numbers to other thieves.

Every year, it costs consumers and the credit card industry billions.

"I am just happy that this has been stopped before is goes too far," said Arpaio.

Catching whoever did this won't be easy, but they won't be able to the sheriff's card anymore because it's been canceled.

"I hope it wasn't my infamous name that drew this attention. And if they did know the name maybe they should have thought twice about ripping off the sheriff."

Like most victims of credit card fraud, the sheriff will not be responsible for the charges.

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