Former CSU basketball player charged with stealing student credit cards

tstevens@ledger-enquirer.comApril 18, 2014 

Jahmad Saleem

A former Columbus State University basketball player made $544 worth of fraudulent charges after stealing two students' credit cards in early April, according to court testimony.

Jahmad Saleem, 23, faced four charges for felony financial transaction fraud, one count of felony financial transaction theft, two theft by taking charges and possession of marijuana during Friday's Recorder's Court hearing.

A CSU police officer told the court they began investigating the thefts on April 2, after the students noticed their purses had been ransacked in the Davidson Student Center. Not long after, one student noticed a $61 charge made at Reese Road's Majik Market. The second student reported three fraudulent charges — $18 at Majik Market, $165 at a nearby Discount Liquor and $300 at an unspecified jewelry store in Peachtree Mall.

A witness, who recognized Saleem by the street name "Boo," later reported the senior criminal justice major for suspicious activity, according to court testimony.

Days after the theft, Saleem called CSU police and confessed he was present in the student center the day of the thefts, the officer said. He also said he intended to confess to the dean of students the following day.

During his arrest, police found a small amount of marijuana in his pocket. He was charged and taken to Muscogee County Jail.

Assistant Vice President for University Relations John Lester said Saleem voluntarily quit the CSU men's basketball team two weeks ago for an unspecified reason. He remains a student at the university.

Judge Michael Joyner granted Saleem an own recognizance release, meaning Saleem owes no bond as long as he honors his promise to appear at upcoming court proceedings. The request was granted because the theft was under $600 and Saleem has area family members.

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