Woman Uses Counterfeit $100 Bill at Saratoga Village to Buy Coffee, Muffins

Big Basin Way coffee shop Blue Rock Shoot among victims.

An unidentified "young" woman used a counterfeit $100 bill the afternoon of Monday, Jan. 7 at Blue Rock Shoot coffee shop, 14523 Big Basin Way, to pay for coffee and muffins.

Blue Rock Shoot cashier Esbeydi Sanchez said the woman and her female companion have not returned to the business and have not been seen since. The incident was not reported to police, she added.

"It's the first time this has happened," said Sanchez, adding that it was her sister, Eren Sanchez, who helped the woman.

Ruthe Roberts, owner of Ruthe Roberts Wine Collective, alerted her fellow Saratoga retail merchants about the crime with a post on Facebook Jan. 10.

"... Wanted to advise everyone that Blue Rock Shoot was the unfortunate retailer to receive a fake $100 bill from a customer. It doesn't have all the correct watermarks and the paper feels different. Be careful," she wrote.

According to police, the best way to spot counterfeit currency is by:

  • Holding bills up to bright light. Good bills will have a hologram on the face-up side of the bill. 
  • The U.S. Treasury suggests taking any $10, $20 or $50 bill and moving it back and forth. A number in the lower right-hand corner should be seen. If the bill's good, a shift in these colors should be noticeable.
  • Holding up bills to ultraviolet light. Good bills glow in their own colors. A $100 bill glows red.
  • Check the bill's serial numbers printed on the bill in the same color ink as the Treasury Seal.

If merchants encounter fake bills, the U.S. Treasury recommends the following:

  • Do not return the bill to the passer.
  • Delay the passer with some excuse, if possible.
  • Observe the passer's description - and their companions' descriptions - and write down their vehicle license plate numbers if you can.
  • Contact your local police department, or call your local U.S. Secret Service Office.
  • Write your initials and date in the white border area of the suspected counterfeit note.
  • Do not handle the counterfeit note. Place it inside a protective cover, a plastic bag, or envelope to protect it until you place it in the hands of an identified Secret Service Agent.
  • Surrender the note or coin only to a properly identified police officer or a Secret Service Special Agent, or mail it to your nearest U.S. Secret Service field office.


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