12 years in prison for identify theft conviction

WASHINGTON – A Silver Spring man convicted of using credit cards he stole from more than two dozen vehicles was sentenced to 12 years in prison Wednesday.

Michael B. Dorsey, 47, was convicted of 22 total counts of misdemeanor theft, felony theft, identity theft and misuse of a credit card for the 2011 crime spree. Another sentencing in a related theft case is scheduled for Thursday. Montgomery County prosecutors are seeking 4.5 years in prison, which would be served consecutively to Wednesday’s sentence.

Circuit Court Judge Sharon Burrell sentenced Dorsey to 20 years in prison but suspended eight of those years. He will also serve five years on supervised probation, according to prosecutors.

Between March and October 2011, Dorsey targeted vehicles parked at tennis and golf clubs, a spa, and areas along the C&O Canal and MacArthur Boulevard. Many of the items Dorsey stole were in plain view.

According to a probable cause statement, Dorsey broke into parked vehicles, often smashing the passenger windows, and stole purses, including one worth $1,000, wallets, cell phones, laptops and more than $6,000 worth of jewelry. He used the credit cards found in those stolen wallets and purses at gas stations, a CVS Pharmacy and a grocery store.

Police obtained surveillance footage of Dorsey using stolen credit cards at various locations. He often wore wire rim glasses and a dark coat with brown buttons. Police recovered many of the clothing items he was seen wearing in the videos at Dorsey’s home.

Police were able to identify the man in the surveillance videos because he used his phone number to check on the balance of a gift card he purchased with a stolen credit card. Dorsey also gave police his phone number and name after he made what investigators described as a false police report claiming that his own car was also broken into and items stolen.

He was arrested after police, who had him under surveillance, watched him steal from a vehicle parked along Old Georgetown Road.

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