matthew shinnick sold his bike and received a check from the buyer that was for much more than the agreed upon price. suspicious, he went to his local bank of america branch to ask if the check was real and if the account had sufficient funds. the teller found that the account had sufficient funds and so shinnick decided to cash it. when the teller began that process, she found that there was a fraud alert on the account and that the check was in fact fake. things went crazy from that point:
From SFGate, Check from a scammer bounces victim into jail:
shinnick had to pay thousands to get himself out of jail and clear his name, and bank of america refused to reimburse him. so he went to a consumer advocate radio host, and this host implored his listeners to close their bank of america accounts and let him know how much money they removed from bank of america. so far, the consumer advocate says $50 million has been removed from bank of america because of this incident.
The teller contacted the business and was informed that no check had been written to Shinnick for $2,000 or any other amount. She immediately passed the check to the branch manager. "I saw him talking on the phone and staring at me," Shinnick said. "A few minutes later, four SFPD officers came into the bank. They didn't say a thing. They just kicked my legs apart and handcuffed me behind my back." The police report for Shinnick's arrest says he was taken into custody "for the safety of the bank employees as well as the bank customers."
this is crazy. i closed my bank of america account years ago because of their awful customer service, but this arrest takes things to the next level. there must be a better procedure for dealing with these problems. indeed, a few questions could have cleared things up. he could've more clearly indicated his suspicion that the check might be fraudulent, and was given to him as part of a transaction. was this kind of response really necessary?