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Bike shop employee charged with theft

MEDFORD — A Medford man faces felony theft and computer crime charges after allegedly stealing more than $7,000 from the motorcycle shop in which he worked.

Medford police believe Jason Lawrence Wyncoop, 35, of the 1700 block of Spring Street, started stealing from Motorcycle USA approximately six months ago.

They allege Wyncoop faked return transactions and pocketed the money. In all, he made off with around $7,000, Medford police Sgt. Scott Clauson said.

"As a loss, it wasn't much," Clauson said, "but we'd like to get the word out about this crime so other merchants might not fall victim in a similar manner."

Detectives say Wyncoop searched through sales records to find cash transactions. He then would alter the records to make it appear a customer had returned items they had previously purchased and keep the refunded money for himself, Clauson said.

"In all, he took only $40 to $50 at a time, but it added up," Clauson said.

The apparent scam came to light one day in October when a customer attempted to return an item. Motorcycle USA employees told the customer their records showed a refund already had been issued for the items, Clauson said.

"That was a pretty big red flag," Clauson said. "They went through some records and finally called us to investigate."

Wyncoop is accused of falsifying approximately 62 transactions since February, Clauson said.

Since only cash transactions were used, sensitive customer information was not a factor in the crime, Clauson said.

"He didn't steal the customer's identity," Clauson said. "The only loss was suffered by his employer."

Wyncoop was lodged in the Jackson County Jail and charged with aggravated identity theft, two counts of first-degree theft, two counts of felony computer crime and two counts of falsifying business records. He remained in jail late Tuesday on $38,000 bail.

"It is important that businesses have a checks-and-balances system in place to keep these crimes from happening," Clauson said.

He said it usually is difficult for businesses to recoup their losses after an employee is convicted of stealing from them.

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 776-4471 or e-mail cconrad@mailtribune.com.