Woman Accused of Stealing Credit Card While Juror in Credit Card Theft Case

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By Kamika Dunlap on March 19, 2010 1:50 PM

Prosecutors didn't have to search far to find Jennifer Mercado, who was accused of stealing a credit card and taking lunchtime shopping sprees while serving on jury duty.

Mercado, 20, is accused of stealing credit cards from a fellow juror and making purchases from stores near the courthouse while on the jurors' lunch hour, AOL News reports.

And on what type of trial was Mercado serving as a juror? A stolen credit card case.

The same prosecutors in the grand larceny and possession of a stolen credit card trial for which that Mercado was a juror caught Mercado allegedly stealing from stores near the Bronx Hall of Justice.

John Postrik, 49, reported that Mercado, his fellow juror returned to the courthouse with shopping bags that matched corresponding charges on his credit card statements. He also reported that his card was stolen.

Mercado was removed from juror duty and admitted to the purchases on Postrik's credit card, which she claims he gave to her. She admitted charging $500 worth of handbags and other expensive items on his credit card.

She is now faces several charges after being arrested.

Mercado was arrested after allegedly trying to use Postrik's card. She dropped the card and walked out of the store after a clerk asked her for identification.

She was charged with grand larceny, stolen property, identity theft and unlawful use of a credit card.

In general, identity theft laws in most states make it a crime to misuse another person's identifying information -- whether personal or financial. That information can include social security numbers, credit history, and PIN numbers and is often obtained through mail, wallets and purses, identification, and credit or debit cards.