'Movie money' once again used in purchase arranged online

Shylaih Prescott

A Jefferson County grand jury has indicted Shylaih Prescott, 20, on allegations of forgery and intent to defraud and harm after it was reported that she used cinematic prop money to purchase a 4-wheeler through the online marketplace app Offer Up.

Beaumont police have been warning local businesses about customers trying to make purchases with “movie money,” typically $100 bills, since late February, as previously reported by The Examiner.

According to the indictment, the victim was contacted by Prescott through the Offer Up app and agreed to meet her in the parking lot of Sam’s Club on I-10 in Beaumont on Feb. 17.

The victim and his friend unloaded the 4-wheeler from their truck and showed Prescott how to start it, then gave her the title. Prescott gave them an envelope with 20 cinematic $100 bills before getting on the 4-wheeler and riding off.

When the victim opened the envelope, he discovered the “movie money” inside. He tried to follow Prescott while his friend called police, but she escaped.

Patrol officers found Dustin Bernard driving the 4-wheeler Feb. 23. Bernard told the officers that Prescott was his girlfriend.

Feb. 28, the victim’s friend identified Prescott in a photo lineup as the person who took the 4-wheeler and paid with prop money.

While being interviewed by detectives at the Jefferson County Jail about an unrelated case, Prescott admitted to buying the 4-wheeler using cinematic money.

An indictment is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Aug. 2, Jermaine Bernard, 21, was indicted on allegations of forgery after reportedly using cinematic prop money to buy a used iPhone 7 Plus through the popular online marketplace app Let Go outside the Verizon store on Dowlen Road. 

— Eleanor Skelton