What would you do if you suddenly found yourself with an extra six figures in your bank account? And what if the money was there by mistake?
According to police, one Pennsylvania couple went on a shopping spree after discovering that an accidental bank transfer had left an additional $120,000 in their BB&T bank account.
Authorities say that Robert and Tiffany Williams — 36 and 35, respectively — did not notify either their bank or police after discovering that a bank teller's error had mistakenly increased their funds reportedly from just over $1,000 to six figures, but instead went on a two-and-a-half week spending spree in early June, burning through more than $100,000 of the money, according to the Williamsburg Sun-Gazette.
The couple allegedly used that money to buy an ATV, a car trailer and a race car, while also putting a down payment on a Chevrolet SUV. The Williamses allegedly also paid off their bills and handed out roughly $15,000 to friends.
The $120,000 was meant to be transferred into the bank account of an investment company called Dimension Covington Investment LLC, authorities say. When the mistake was discovered on June 20, the bank pulled the six-figure funds from the couple's account, which resulted in an overdraft of more than $107,000. The couple's account had a balance of $1,121 before the mistake, State Trooper Aaron Brown told the Sun-Gazette.
When the bank informed the Williamses that they were responsible for returning the funds, Tiffany Williams reportedly told bank officials that the money had already been spent, but she promised to speak to her husband to devise a repayment plan. However, the bank contacted state police in July after the couple allegedly became unresponsive to further attempts to recoup the money.
The couple was arrested on Sept. 3 and made their first court appearance on Monday.
"All I'm going to say is we took some bad legal advice from some people and it probably wasn't the best thing in the end," Robert Williams said in court, according to WNEP.
The couple was arraigned in a Pennsylvania court on Monday and will now go to trial facing felony charges of theft, conspiracy and receiving stolen property, according to court records. They were released on bail of $25,000 each.
The couple is represented by attorney Howard B. Gold of the Lycoming County Public Defender's Office. CNBC Make It reached out to the Public Defender's Office for comment and will update this article with any response.
In a statement provided to The Washington Post, a BB&T spokesman said the bank can not comment on the specifics of the case, but added "we always work as quickly as possible to address any issue that affects our clients."
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