A Pennsylvania man is facing criminal charges after state police say he posed as a former major league pitcher to acquire autographs from athletes purported to be for charity and then posted them for sale in a Facebook group.
Michael T. Daily, 25, of Stroudsburg, has been charged with theft by deception unlawful use of a computer and identity theft. Local media reports indicate he was released from jail on a $25,000 unsecured bail.
State Police investigators say he used a Twitter account to acquire memorabilia for his own personal use rather than for the charitable purposes he claimed, including a cousin he claimed was dying.
The case stemmed from a complaint through the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office in Westminster, Maryland. An NFL player identified through court records as Baltimore Ravens tight end Hayden Hurst, stated he’d sent two signed game jerseys to someone he thought was San Francisco Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum after being contacted via Twitter and text message. However, the athlete’s agent soon found one of those jerseys for sale online and contacted law enforcement.
Last week, Pennsylvania State Police executed a search warrant on the residence where the package was shipped. Inside Daily’s home, they say they seized a variety of sports memorabilia, all signed by athletes, including jerseys cleats, signed baseballs, baseball cards, WWE championship belts and other items.
A preliminary hearing has been set for March 31.