Do you think identity theft occurs only by random people sifting through your trash looking for personal information they can steal? Many people wonder how far to go in protecting their personal information. Should you trust your friends and relatives?

Here is a news report with a twist to using someone else's identity. On September 28th 2009 Bernard Marrero returned home from his honeymoon only to be arrested for a DUI; his brother Samuel Marrero was the re-gifter of this late wedding gift. Police are staying that his brother, Samuel Marrero gave them his name, social security number and birthday when Sam was pulled over. The question remains as to how he was able to get away with it and what if any action can be taken by Bernard to remedy the lost time and embarrassment caused by this incident. It makes me wonder, is it really so easy to fool the police and for the wrong man to be arrested? Did he have an ID? Do these brothers really look so much alike? Were the police in a rush? Are the facts in the story accurate? Was Sam taken to the police station, booked, fingerprinted and whatever was in his pockets taken and examined? Or was he allowed to walk away from the stop? What is the real story? What are the real facts?

From a lawyer's point of view I have to wonder if this would amount to identity theft. Identity theft is a crime under Iowa law; it also provides a basis for a civil cause of action against the person or company pilfering your identity. It sure seems like it would be identity theft. What do you think?

Steve Lombardi
Iowa personal injury, workers' compensation, motorcycle, quadriplegic, paraplegic, brain injury, death
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