A husband and wife were arrested at a Kennesaw hotel with a cache of stolen bank cards, altered stolen driver’s licences, fake bank checks and drug dealing equipment, police say.
Melissa Sue Iovino, 28, and Salvatore Vito Iovino, 36, were apprehended together by Cobb officers at the Extended Stay America hotel on Busbee Drive in Kennesaw just after 10 a.m. on Nov. 7, records show.
Both were booked into the Cobb jail that morning, but Melissa Iovino was transferred to the DeKalb County jail on Nov. 8, her Cobb jail record states.
Salvatore Iovino remains behind bars in Cobb, subject to three different bond orders totaling $45,000 that are attached to 14 charges, records show.
According to arrest warrants, the couple were using stolen bank cards, driver’s licences and other identifying information belonging to several male and female victims, and writing fake checks to themselves and at least one other person.
Salvatore Iovino broke into at least two victim’s cars to steal the documents, police claim.
Officers said they went to 3316 Busbee Drive in Kennesaw, where the Extended Stay America hotel is located, around 10 a.m. on Nov. 7 and searched, with warrants, a rental vehicle the couple were using.
In the trunk of the car, a 2019 Nissan Altima, police found a black hard shell case containing methamphetamine residue in several places and materials commonly used for dealing drugs, such as “empty plastic baggies,” warrants state.
“The entire kit was well prepared in a matter consistent with frequent usage in the preparation and packaging of controlled substances for sale,” police said.
The case also contained a prescription pill bottle with a partially crushed hydrocodone pill, an opioid painkiller, prescribed to Salvatore Iovino, but “the hydrocodone inside was crushed in a manner not consistent with lawful prescribed consumption,” warrants state.
Both husband and wife face felony counts of possessing hydrocodone, a controlled substance, with intent to distribute, records show.
“Further, the bottle was located within the case containing items used in drug packaging and sales,” warrants state.
Officers said they also found “large amounts of personal property” belonging to the couple in the rental car, including Melissa Iovino’s purse and cellphone in the trunk as well as an identity document bearing her photo in the driver’s door.
In the car were also two endorsed Bank of America checks, for $1,000 and $200, payable to Melissa Iovino, as well as an endorsed “CB&T” check for $489 payable to a different man, officers claim.
Police said they also found Melissa Iovino in possession of a stolen Wells Fargo debit or credit card belonging to another woman, as well as an altered copy of a second female victim’s driver’s license that bore Melissa Iovino’s photograph.
Officers said they also found Salvatore Iovino in possession of a stolen credit card and an altered stolen driver’s license in the male credit card owner’s name, that Salvatore Iovino had put his own photograph on.
The documents were stolen from the victim’s 2014 black Chevrolet Impala outside an LA Fitness gym on Ernest Barrett Parkway in Kennesaw between 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. on Oct. 10, police said.
“Said accused did enter the LA Fitness and take the victim’s key fob,” one of Salvatore Iovino’s arrest warrants states. “Said accused used the key fob to enter said vehicle and take the victim’s wallet with the contents. Said accused is seen on surveillance video taking the keys.”
Police said they also found Salvatore Iovino with an endorsed Amalgamated Bank check in his name for $1,932; an endorsed Wells Fargo check in his name for $500; and an endorsed Amalgamated Bank check for $208 payable to a woman whose name was also found on a fake Georgia driver’s license bearing Melissa Iovino’s photograph.
Police said Salvatore Iovino also stole a 2000 Volvo from Compass Self Storage on Frey Road in Kennesaw around 1 p.m. on Aug. 24, when he had the vehicle towed by a wrecker.
Salvatore Iovino entered the storage facility “using his code” and tried to start the Volvo but it wouldn’t crank, so he called a tow service, police said.
“The wrecker entered the business using said accused code and loaded the vehicle onto the wrecker. Said accused followed the wrecker with victim’s vehicle out of the business,” warrants stated, adding the Volvo’s “bluebook value” was $1,000.
Melissa Iovino is charged with felony counts of stealing a bank card, identity theft fraud, possessing amphetamine for distribution and possessing hydrocodone for distribution, as well as three misdemeanor counts of forgery in the fourth degree, records show.
“The accused is Salvatore Iovino’s wife, and was present with him at the time of his arrest,” one of Melissa Iovino’s warrants states, listing bond at $35,000.
Salvatore Iovino is charged with two felony counts of unlawfully entering a car with intent to commit a crime; felony cocaine possession; felony possession of hydrocodone to distribute; felony possession of amphetamine to distribute, three counts of felony forgery in the third degree; felony card theft; felony identity theft fraud; misdemeanor theft under $1,500; and five counts of misdemeanor forgery in the fourth degree, according to his various arrest warrants.
Police said all the Iovinos’ criminal activity occurred in Kennesaw, although there are four different home addresses listed for the couple on their various warrants and jail records.
Three listed addresses for Salvatore Iovino are on Walton Green Way in Kennesaw, Johnson Ferry Road in Atlanta, and a different location on Johnson Ferry Road in Marietta.
His birth state is listed as both Georgia and Arizona on his different Cobb jail records.
Melissa Iovino’s Cobb jail record does not list a home address but states she was born in Ohio.
Her warrants show a home address on Wallace Tatum Road in Cumming.