Walmart employee accused in alleged counterfeit scheme

An employee of the Walmart Supercenter allegedly accepted counterfeit money when she loaded cash onto gift cards for an accomplice, a police detective said Friday.

Detective Jerry Lambert of the Pine Bluff Police Department testified at a probable cause hearing for Raelyn Watson, 22, who was arrested Thursday on charges of forgery and theft of property.

According to Lambert, two individuals presented $2,000 in counterfeit money to Watson on Dec. 26 and she loaded that amount onto Walmart gift cards.

When Watson was confronted with store surveillance video showing the transaction, she allegedly told police she had been involved in a second theft in October and November when $12,000 in counterfeit cash was loaded onto gift cards.

Lambert said one of the other suspects is being held in the adult detention center and an investigation is continuing regarding the second person. Neither of those two were identified in the court hearing.

Jefferson County District Judge Kim Bridgforth set a $25,000 bond for Watson after ruling that prosecutors had probable cause to charge her with forgery and two counts of theft of property.

The Public Defender’s Office was appointed to represent Watson.