ATM spits out $37,000 in cash to homeless man

ATM spits out $37,000 in cash to homeless man

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It's something we've all imagined at one time or another, going to an ATM and having the machine mistakenly spit out thousands of dollars. Never happens, right? Guess what? It did happen at a bank ATM in Portland, Maine, early Thursday morning.

This all started at 1:00 in the morning, when officers were called to a TD Bank branch on Maine Mall road. A transient was inside the bank sleeping beside the ATM. Officers went inside and moved him along. But, he came back.

At 5:30 in the morning, a woman waiting to use the ATM in this bank called police to report a man spending an unusual amount of time at the ATM. When South Portland police officers drove up, they saw this same homeless man inside filling a shopping bag with cash from the ATM. How much? It turns out it's more than $37,000 in cash.

Lt. Tom Bernard told WGME the man used his bank card to withdraw $140 from his account, but then kept going. And the ATM just kept giving him money.

The money was returned to the bank, and bank officials said they don't want to press charges. But police continue to investigate. The identity of the man wasn't released because he hasn't been charged.

A bank official described the problem as a "code error" and said no customer accounts were affected.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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