The Likely Conspiracies Behind The Katy ISD Counterfeit Ring
Various news outlets reported Wednesday that the Katy Independent School District received 10 reports of counterfeit bills passed in school cafeterias in the past couple of months. These include several high schools and an elementary school.
Steve Stanford, district spokesperson for KISD, tells Hair Balls that the school district gets counterfeit bills on occasion, like any other business, but normally has only one or two incidences per year. However, the recent spike caught their attention.
"Some of the bills were spotted by employees," he said, "and some were spotted by the bank after the deposit." The largest bill discovered was $50, and the total of the fake cash was a few hundred dollars. School cafeterias will no longer accept bills over $20, he said, as an effort prevent continued circulation of fake bills in the form of change. (If you're wondering why a kid would hand over a $50 bill for some tater tots, it was probably used instead to pre-pay for his or her lunch program.)
Once the bank reported the counterfeit currency to the Secret Service, the investigation was taken out of the district's hands, he said.
"The results of the investigation will probably not come back to us, unless we are asked to participate," he said. Now that the Secret Service are involved, he said, the district is out of the loop. The district doesn't know whether or not students involved and Stanford wouldn't speculate as to the source of the bills. He doesn't expect that they will find out the conclusion of the investigation.
There really can be only two possibilities.
First possibility: Photoshop-savvy stoners, who -- without the dough to support their munchies -- develop a crackpot scheme to make funny money with the scan and copy functions of their parent's fax machine. Counting on the indifference of cafeteria workers, they figure they'll get some chili-dogs and the real moola in change to boot. They'll ask for ones -- quarters are too obvious ("They'll be on to us maaaahhhnnnnnnnnn") -- which they'll pop into the vending machine nearby. After much hand-wringing over getting the bills in the machine the right way, they'll come out the deal with all the Cheez-Its a man needs.
Second possibility: This year's homecoming queen's parents lost their 401k last November. This means allowance is down to $20 a day (OMG!). What is she going to do, she thinks? She can't be seen in clothes that were soooo last month. And that new Chanel bag, she must have it!
She's already starting to run her boyfriend dry. Besides she can't press him too hard, he's on varsity football and all the girls think he is soooo fetch. Well, she thinks, there is that weird guy, Wally, who's always following her around like a little puppy. He'd do anything for her, she says to herself, and he takes all those computer classes.
So Wally hacks into the treasury department website and is able to get the blueprints of an old twenty from the archives. This won't pass in most places, he thinks, but it would probably work in the lunch line. Alice (homecoming queen) won't deign to be seen eating cafeteria food so Wally is going to have to pass the bogus bread himself, and win her heart one cheeseburger and change at a time.
Suddenly, the bank discovers the sham clams and the Secret Service becomes involved. Wally is caught, but the feds, recognizing his m@d sKillZ, enlist him for support against a mysterious foreign menace seeking to undermine U.S. currency. (Sorry guys, the script was just bought for a feature film. Michael Bay is going to be directing.)
-- Thomas Rundle
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Houston Press' biggest stories.