Wanted Minnesota man arrested after complaint about broken toilet seat leads to discovery of fake checks


Photo from Columbus Police Department

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COLUMBUS, Ind. – A problem with a broken toilet seat blew the lid off a wanted man’s identity, police say.

Around 2:50 p.m. Wednesday, officers were called to the Sleep Inn located at 2335 W. Jonathan Moore Pike after a man reported he’d been injured when his toilet seat broke in his hotel room.

The man gave police a fake name that coincidentally matched the name and birthdate of a man with an out-of-state warrant, police said. Upon further investigation, police learned his real name—Travis Lindholm—and discovered he had four felony arrest warrants out of Minnesota.

Travis Lindholm (left) and Chelci Johnson (right)

Officers spoke with a woman who was with Lindholm. She also provided them with a fake name, police said; police later identified her as 28-year-old Chelci Johnson of Gas City.

In their hotel room, police found several ID cards and driver’s licenses with different names and Lindholm’s photo. They also seized bank cards, personal checks and a suitcase filled with several forms of identification with different names. Police recovered a vehicle in the hotel parking lot that had been reported stolen in Marion, Indiana.

Lindholm, 31 of Bayport, Minnesota, faces charges in Indiana for felony identity deception, possession of false government ID cards and false informing related to the Wednesday case. In Minnesota, he’s wanted on charges of offering a forged check, felony assault and witness tampering.

Johnson is charged with identity deception and false informing.

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