Man Gets $1.5 Million From ATM Error -- and Gambles It All Away
Not Only Is He Going to Jail, But He Probably Has to Repay the Money and Won't Be Allowed to Gamble Ever Again
Ronald Page, in one of the great understatements of the day, is a bad gambler. When an ATM erroneously spit out at him $312,000 that he didn't have in his account, not only did he gamble that he'd get away with the cash, but he used the ill-gotten funds to go gambling … and promptly lose the wad of money.
Now, the 55-year-old retired General Motors employee is facing 15 months in prison, as well as potentially having to repay a total of $1,543,104 -- yes, even after losing that initial $300K, Ronald Page kept right on stealing and gambling.
Page's saga began on August 1, 2009, when a visit to the ATM at the Greektown Casino in Detroit left him $312,000 richer, thanks to a "pay all" status that had been mistakenly applied to his account, and allowed him to withdraw unlimited funds. The money was not his, and he knew it; the average balance on his Bank of America account at the time was around $100.
Later on Aug. 1, Page withdrew another $51,727, and by Aug. 18, he had withdrawn the whopping $1.5 million total, and blown it at casinos in Detroit and Las Vegas.
Bank officials became aware of the situation when Page's account became seriously overdrawn, because, again, not only was he gambling by stealing, but his actual casino gambling activities were not proving to be very successful.
Page pled guilty to theft of bank funds on March 7, and his sentencing will take place on June 27, ABC News reports.
The U.S. Attorney's Office recommended he serve 15 months in prison, repay the $1,543,104 to Bank of America and be prohibited from any sort of gambling activity in the future, including casinos, lotteries, horse racing, dog racing and even bingo games.
"In this case, the bank's glitch allowed the defendant to lose a significant amount of money that was not even his in the first place," the U.S. Attorney's sentencing memorandum stated. "The fact that defendant acted on an impulse does not minimize the seriousness of his conduct and the need for a custodial sentence."
Apparently, Page was not aware of a trend at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino in Vegas … the casino's roulette tables have a habit of landing on the same numbers several times in a row, Gawker reports, which might have helped Mr. Page in keeping, and then repaying, some of that stolen stash.