Cooperation between the Barron County Sheriff’s Department and investigators from the Chicago Police Department has resulted in the arrest of a man who allegedly bilked a Prairie Farm resident out of $19,000, according to a complaint filed May 23, 2019, in Barron County Circuit Court.
The defendant is identified as Miso Kitanovski, 49, 2447 W. Lunt Ave., Unit 2R, Chicago.
The victim came to the Sheriff’s Department May 17 to report he had express mailed $19,000 to someone who had phoned him and asked for the money to post bail for his grandson whom, he was told, had been arrested for drunk driving and causing an accident.
The Prairie Farm resident said that before he sent the money, he asked to speak with his grandson.
About an hour later, the original caller, who identified himself as “Daniel,” phoned again “and said he had (the grandson) available to speak with him.”
The “grandson,” whom the victim said had a voice that sounded like his own grandson, asked that the money be sent right away, but also asked that the grandfather “not tell anyone he was in trouble.”
The money was sent via FedEx to an address on the north side of Chicago.
As sheriff’s investigators began their work on the case, the victim’s wife called and said “Daniel” had called again, asking for another $10,000 in cash. Investigators worked with the victim to devise a plan to send another package to the defendant, and to alert Chicago authorities to be ready when the defendant came to claim the money.
Sheriff’s investigators called the Chicago Police Department and learned the location to which the cash was to be sent was a vacant building. Chicago police staked out the location and saw a late model Ford escape parked nearby. It turned out to be registered to the defendant.
At first, the sting apparently backfired when the package was delivered to another address on the North Side. Using tracking information from the package, police tracked it to the second location, where they spoke to a business owner who had moved his insurance agency from the vacant location.
It turned out the Fed Ex driver had rerouted the package to the second location because he was aware the owner had moved his business. Police collected the package and the investigation was suspended.
On May 21, the business owner called Chicago police to report two people came to his business looking for the package. He told them he didn’t have it. They showed him a screen shot of the FedEx shipping document that showed he had received the package.
The business owner took photos of the person who came to claim the package and notified police, who arranged with FedEx to set up a second delivery at 6 p.m. May 22. Police were waiting when the defendant showed up and retrieved the package. Photos taken by the business owner were used to confirm the defendant’s identity. He was arrested.