Police: Man Charged With Fraud After Staging Banana Peel Fall

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A man who claimed he was owed $15,000 in settlements after tripping on a banana peel inside a D.C. Metro elevator is now facing fraud charges. (Published Wednesday, Nov 27, 2013)

    A man is facing fraud charges after police say he staged a fall on a banana peel he placed on the ground of a D.C. Metro station.

    Investigators say Maurice Owens filed a $15,000 lawsuit against WMATA, claiming he injured his left leg and hip after slipping on a banana peel left inside an elevator at the Potomac Avenue Metro station back in August.

    But a surveillance camera mounted inside the elevator told a different story. 

    The video show Owens as he enters the empty elevator at 8:45 p.m. on Aug. 8, investigators said. The man in the video pivots and looks directly into the camera as he drops what "was later identified as a banana peel" by the door of the elevator. The man looks into the camera two more times before slipping on the peel on his way out.

    He reported his injury and was transported to a local hospital for treatment.

    During an interview held after the incident, Owens reportedly asked why a station custodian had not cleaned up the banana peel and requested $15,000 to settle his claim.

    Owens was arrested and charged earlier this month with second degree fraud, a felony. His lawsuit was also dismissed.

    Owens is scheduled to appear in court next week.

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