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Travel Agent Dashes Vacation Dreams for Many

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GARNER — A Garnertravel agent, accused to leaving town with her client's money, has beenarrested in West Virginia.

Garner police say Kelly Kirk (pictured atright), the owner of Casino Connections, left town with more than $30,000of her clients' money. Her husband and 7-month-old baby also disappeared.

The search for Kirk ended Thursday when a Garner detective traced atelephone number through the Internet

Kelly Kirk is now in custody in Huntington, W.Va. She faces 11 chargesof obtaining property by false pretense.

Police say if you have questions about a travel agent, you should callthe number shown at left, above.

But Kirk's clients weren't the only ones hurt by her alleged actions.Another travel agency, housed in the same building as Kirk's, has becomethe mistaken target of anger over Kirk.

Joanne and Pam Kirsch own J and B Travel which resides on a differentfloor of the Hartwell Plaza on Highway 70 in Garner. With the similaritybetween their last name and Kirk's, it's easy to see how some people mightbe confused.

Joanne Kirsch says their trouble started as soon as the news about Kirkbroke.

Her daughter, Pam Kirsch says their business has already been damaged.

The negative publicity, says Joanne Kirsch, is going to hurt theentire travel industry.

The Kirsches say they fear consumers will shy away from using travelagents.

Police say if you have questions about a travel agency, call the numbershown at left, above.

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