MIDLAND - You don't typically hear of people using spray-starch on and ironing their money, but 21 year-old Lindsey Jackson has been doing it for years.
"I just didn't like when you have too many wrinkled dollar bills, they never fit into your wallet, and it just looks trashy to me," she said.
But Monday, the crisp bills proved costly. She went to the Supermercado to transfer some money, with the same cashier she always went to, but this time things went a little differently.
"She told me that when she had scanned all the money that it was fake," Jackson said, after which she tried to explain why the bills looked that way. Apparently the lady laughed it off, went to the back and called the police.
The pile of money that was in question was filled with assorted bills adding to $151. Each one was marked by a pen that detects counterfeit bills, and each one still has a brown line remaining, which is what led them to believe it was. (When the marker is used on real bills, the ink becomes transparent.)
Police were surprised to hear the story when they got there. An officer claimed in his 34 years of service to never have heard of such a thing.
"Before they put me in the cop car, they held the money up to the light and told me that I knew how to make really good counterfeit money. And I told them I didn't make counterfeit money, that it was just spray starch, and that he could smell the money and it smelled like spray starch and he laughed at me and told me I was going to jail," Jackson recalled.
She was arrested and taken to the Midland Detention Center. When her mother found out, she began begging for investigators to take another look.
"This is a 21 year old girl fixing to spend the night in jail for something she didn't do, can somebody just look at it," mother, Barbara Moore, said.
Jackson spent 3 days in jail, until Moore bonded her out at $10,000. Now according to Jackson, charges were dropped and MPD has dismissed the case and returned the "counterfeit" money. The bond money though, was a lost cause.
"They told her that it was non-refundable. That once you pay that you're just out of luck," Jackson said.
But more than that, the two women want something else.
"Nobody has apologized to me. When I go places people look at me like I'm nothing, like I'm trash. My face has been everywhere, and my name has been slandered for no reason. I want everybody to maybe test money better, to have my name taken off of everything, I want apologies," Jackson said.
"The most horrible thing is, I can't even read some of the stuff that people are writing on social media about her. They don't even know her. This was something completely innocent on her behalf, yet she's already been convicted by everybody," Moore said.
NewsWest 9 is unsure about what triggered the money to show up as counterfeit, but it is likely a chemical reaction with the starch.