Police: Shaler teacher used colleagues’ driver’s licenses to make fraudulent store returns
Monday, February 3, 2020 | 2:53 PM
A Shaler Area Middle School teacher is accused of stealing her colleagues’ driver’s licenses and using them to make fraudulent returns at discount stores in the area, police said.
Jeannine Vittorino, 45, of Robinson, was charged Saturday by Millvale police, who started investigating in September when one of Vittorino’s colleagues reported her driver’s license was missing, according to a criminal complaint.
Vittorino teaches world and classical languages at Shaler Area Middle School, according to the district’s website.
One of Vittorino’s colleagues at the school caught Vittorino crouching in her classroom on the floor behind the desk where she kept her purse, police said. After Vittorino left, the other teacher noticed her wallet was open and the driver’s license was missing.
Several other teachers who had contact with Vittorino also noticed missing driver’s licenses, according to the complaint.
On Jan. 7, the teacher who caught Vittorino by her purse was trying to make a return at a TJ Maxx near Greensburg when she was told she wasn’t allowed to make future returns to the company, police said.
The teacher used the website The Retail Equation and learned there had been 19 transactions using her driver’s license between Nov. 18 and Jan. 4, although she had made only three of them, according to the complaint. The Retail Equation is used by the retailing industry to identify people abusing return policies; it is also open to consumers whose returns were denied.
Most of the other transactions were at stores in Robinson and Cranberry, according to the report, the complaint said.
Millvale police requested surveillance video from a loss prevention official at TJ Maxx, who provided police with video footage and still photos from a TJ Maxx store, according to the complaint.
The complaint didn’t specify which store captured the footage, but Vittorino, her husband and a juvenile were shown making fraudulent returns, according to the complaint.
Vittorino is charged with theft, identity theft, retail theft, access device fraud and corruption of minors.
Messages seeking comment on a number associated with Vittorino weren’t returned. A man who answered another number associated with Vittorino declined to comment.
A Shaler Area School District spokeswoman said the district cannot comment on personnel matters.