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St. Petersburg man who received stranger’s stimulus check returned to the IRS

Better Call Behnken

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) – Rufus Anderson discovered a $1,200 stimulus payment that wasn’t intended for him in his bank account in April.

The “transaction” detailed showed that the money was for a woman named Cecelia – a woman Anderson says he has never heard of. He says he was shocked when Regions Bank didn’t help him get the money to the right person.

Anderson says he was told to just hang on to the money until the IRS figured out its mistake. In June, when the money was still sitting in his account, he turned to Better Call Behnken.

“This woman may really need this money,” he said. “If it’s not yours, you shouldn’t have it.”

Consumer Investigator Shannon Behnken contacted Regions Bank and was told this would be looked into. Anderson says a bank representative called him to apologize for the way this was handled, and the money was promptly sent back to the IRS, so it can be sent to the correct account.

“It makes me feel good,” Anderson said.”I sleep better at night.”

Congressman Charlie Crist’s office also followed up with Anderson, after a call from Better Call Behnken. Crist said his office wants to make sure the correct person receives the money.

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