Tiffany and Robert Williams were surprised to find $120,000 in their account at BB&T bank. It was not a gift and they did not win a lottery. The money had been meant for a company account and was deposited in the Williams’ account by mistake.
The Williams didn’t check in with the bank to see what had happened. Instead, they went on a shopping spree. They went through $100,000 within two and a half weeks.
But since the money did not belong to them, the couple is now facing felony theft charges as well as a massive overdraft fee from the bank.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. The Bank Didn’t Notice the Deposit Error For Nearly Three Weeks
The $120,000 deposit had been meant for a company called Dimension Covington Investment, according to the Williamsport Sun-Gazette. A bank teller mistakenly put the money in Robert and Tiffany Williams’ account on May 31, 2019.
But the BB&T bank did not notice the accidental deposit until June 20. The bank then withdrew the original amount from the Williams’ account.
The problem was that the Williams’ had never contacted the bank about the massive sum. Before the error, the Willaims’ account had only about $1,100 in it. By the time the bank took the money back, Robert and Tiffany had already spent more than $100,000 of it.
2. Robert & Tiffany Williams Used the Money to Buy Vehicles & Help Cash-Strapped Friends
Robert and Tiffany Williams went on a shopping spree when the $120,000 landed in their account, even though they later admitted to investigators that they were aware the money didn’t belong to them.
The couple used the money to buy vehicles including a racecar, an SUV, a camper, and two four-wheelers. Local ABC affiliate WNEP-TV, citing state police, reported that the Williams’ also used the money for car repairs and to pay bills. In addition, they gifted $15,000 to friends who were in need of extra cash.
3. The Williams’ Now Owe the Bank $107,000 in Overdraft Fees & Face Felony Charges
Bank representatives reached out to Robert and Tiffany Williams after realizing the $120,000 error. The remaining amount was withdrawn from the Williams’ account. Since the couple had spent more than $100,000, they are responsible for paying back $107,000.
Tiffany Williams initially told a bank representative that she and her husband would work out a payment plan to return the money. But after two phone calls, the couple stopped communicating with the bank. The bank contacted police in July of 2019.
Robert and Tiffany Williams have been charged with three felonies: Theft by Unlawful Taking, Receiving Stolen Property, and a Conspiracy charge. Court records show they were arrested on September 3, 2019. They each posted bail of $25,000 and were released from custody.
4. Court Records Show Robert Williams Previously Pleaded Guilty In Cases Involving Writing False Checks & Theft
Robert Williams has a number of prior cases listed in a search of Pennsylvania public records. In 2001, he was accused of writing a series of bad checks. He was also charged with Theft by Deception. Records with the Clearfield County Court of Common Pleas shows Williams pleaded guilty and was sentenced to probation.
Williams was again accused of theft in late 2007. He was charged with “Theft By Unlaw Taking” and “Receiving Stolen Property.” Court records show he pleaded guilty and was given a jail sentence of at least 30 days but less than two years. You can see the court record here.
By 2010, Williams was on probation. He was ordered to pay $3,925.56, to be paid in installments of $25 per week. Documents show Williams was found in Contempt of Court for failure to pay. The record shows that Wiliams also had to serve community service.
5. Robert Williams Is a Field Supervisor at a Water Management Company & Tiffany Works For the Postal Service, According to Their Facebook Pages
Tiffany describes herself as a stay-at-home mother. But she also lists a job at the U.S. Postal Service in Williamsport, which is located a few miles west of Montoursville.
Robert Williams lists his employer as Fluid Delivery Solutions, LLC, a water management company. He also included on his Facebook page that he owns a racecar and runs “Williams Motorsports.”