Published: Apr 09, 2014 1:15 PM EDT
Updated: Apr 09, 2014 11:41 PM EDT

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla.- Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers is asking for the public's help identifying a man who's allegedly been stealing checks out of mailboxes, then "washing" off the information and cashing them for his own personal gain.

The unknown male has been caught cashing several fraudulent checks at multiple banks in Collier County over the last few months. The checks were all stolen after being placed in mailboxes. The checks were then washed or altered, with payee names and dollar amounts changed. It is believed that the suspect used stolen identities in order to successfully cash the checks without question.

While the suspect may be local, detectives believe he may also be coming back and forth to Collier County from the east coast.

“Although it’s not always convenient, the safest means to mail checks is at an official US Post Office blue mailbox,” said Trish Routte, Crime Stoppers Coordinator. “Using personal or business mailboxes isn’t a guarantee that someone won’t steal your outgoing mail before it’s picked up by the mail carrier. The best safeguard out there to ensure that you don’t become a victim of check fraud, is to take that extra step and mail checks at an official USPS mailbox.”

Anyone with information on the identity and whereabouts of this suspect is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477). All callers will remain anonymous and will be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000. Tips may also be made online at www.swflcrimestoppers.org or by texting a tip to CRIMES (274637) Keyword: REWARD.