Three people trying to cash counterfeit payroll checks at Fairfield County Bank branches were arrested Thursday afternoon, police said.

Police received a call from the bank's branch on Tunxis Hill Road around 12:30 p.m. reporting that a man, later identified as Anthony Lewis, 46, was trying to cash a counterfeit check. The bank would not cash the "suspicious" check, but as the manager was calling police, Lewis fled to a waiting car.

The blue Cadillac left west on Kings Highway and was spotted by an off-duty officer working an outside road job, police said. That officer called in the Cadillac's plate number and it was stopped by police on Black Rock Turnpike near Candlewood Road.

Lewis was identified by the teller. He had also left behind a New York state ID card at the bank with his name on it, according to the report.

The counterfeit checks were all drawn from the account of a local business and the owner had been on her way to the Fairfield branch because of a call she had received from the bank's Trumbull branch. Lewis apparently tried to cash a counterfeit check there Thursday, but was unsuccessful, police said. He did, however, manage to cash one of the counterfeit checks at the Bridgeport branch of Fairfield County Bank that morning.

Lewis, who lives in the Bronx, N.Y., was charged with second-degree forgery and criminal attempt to commit sixth-degree larceny. He was held on a $20,000 bond.

The other occupants of his car, Margaret E. Jones, 39, and Michael Bell, 52, both of Springfield, Mass., both were charged with conspiracy to commit sixth-degree larceny and held on $2,500 bonds.

All three are scheduled to appear Nov. 6 in Bridgeport Superior Court.