Local News

Charge: Worker used DMV computers for ID theft

Posted October 17, 2011

— A former clerk at the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles is facing 18 charges, including five counts of identity theft, in a state probe that has spanned more than a year.

The State Bureau of Investigation began looking at Kimberly Nicole Torres, 36, of 102 Indian Trail in Wendell, in January 2010 after copies of driver's licenses and Social Security cards were found in her desk.

She was fired a month later, and Steve Abbott, a spokesman for the state Department of Transportation, said she did not steal any personal information from the state.

Torres was arrested Friday and was in the Wake County jail under a $275,000 bond Monday evening. Search warrants allege that she used a DMV computer to apply for payday loans in other people's names.

Once the loans were deposited into bank accounts, she told investigators, she would withdraw the money, take a cut and close the account.

If convicted on the identity theft charge, as well as several charges of obtaining property by false pretense and accessing government computers to defraud and forgery, she could face up to 27 years in prison.

Kimberly Torres Charge: Worker used DMV computers for ID theft

"She didn't have access to anything work-wise, anything DMV – such as personal records, drivers' license. She had no access to that," Abbott said.

It's unclear where Torres might have gotten the Social Security cards and driver's licenses.

According to court records, Torres has a lengthy criminal history, including several convictions prior to being hired by the state for assault with a deadly weapon and breaking and entering.

DMV employees are required to have a background check, Abbot said, but because Torres was hired by the DOT, a check never happened.

"We do not do background checks. It's not just DOT, it is all state agencies," Abbott said. "There is no background check required unless it's a job that would require access to private information, access to money or other issues like that."


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • Sherlock Oct 18, 2011

    She didn't have access to anything work-wise, anything DMV – such as personal records, drivers' license. She had no access to that," Abbott said.
    Then what was found in her desk?

  • LibertarianTechie Oct 18, 2011

    No background check just because she worked for another part of the DOT? Are you serious? Someone needs to lose his or her job for that decision. As for her? She needs to pay back ALL of the money she stole--even if it means she has to work on a chain-gang to earn some money to do it.

  • chocodlite12 Oct 18, 2011

    DMV is under DOT so why not do a background check the state application states that the applicant is subject to a background check... Also the department she worked in L&T is under DMV so how was that possible... Something sounds fishy here...

  • superman Oct 18, 2011

    She said she took a cut and closed the account? Did she have a partner? How many different banks did she use?

  • Karmageddon Oct 18, 2011

    No background check for a job with the DOT? Does this surprise anyone?

  • chevybelair57sd Oct 18, 2011

    She should have realized the only crooks tolerated in State government were elected political ones LOL

  • Lead by Example Oct 18, 2011

    Give her the MAXIMUM SENTENCE, as many years in prison as possible.

  • Southern Girl Oct 17, 2011

    She surely doesn't look very upset in her picture! Hope she serves a lot of time for this. It is getting so you can't trust anybody these days - you just never know.

  • Rebelyell55 Oct 17, 2011

    DMV should be responsible for any financial damage!
    October 17, 2011 7:21 p.m.
    No!! Who do think pay the DMV? Tax payer... NO, this is on the employee...

  • jeffingarner Oct 17, 2011

    The gov said we had some hard working state employees. At least now we know what some of them are doing.