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Police: Bank Robber Leaves Birth Certificate Behind
Robbery Also Caught On Tape

UPDATED: 11:39 am EDT June 15, 2006
INDIANAPOLIS -- Nobody ever said criminals are smart.

Police have made an arrest following a bank robbery in which officials said the robber left behind some incriminating evidence. The crime was captured on surveillance video., but police identified their suspect, Rodney Harper, 31, without the tape because of what investigators said fell out of his pocket during the holdup.

"He actually came to the bank to rob the bank with his birth certificate," said Marion County sheriff's Capt. Phil Burton. "He dropped a check cashing card as well as a bill from a phone showing he paid his phone bill."

The video shows the identification falling out onto the floor when the man pulls out his gun.

"One of the employees actually stepped on it so he didn't realize what he dropped," Burton said.

Police said Harper got away with an undisclosed amount of cash, but it was recovered, covered in dye, not far from the bank.

Harper called 911 on Tuesday as police surrounded his home.

"I'm wanting to turn myself in. The police are outside the house right now. I just wanted to let them know I don't have any weapons. I just want to come out," Harper told a 911 dispatcher.

Burton admitted that the robber's missteps made investigators' job a bit easier.

"When they actually rob a bank with their ID, which they leave for us, that's very helpful," Burton said.

Investigators said Harper robbed the Charter One Bank Saturday, dropping his birth certificate, check cashing card and phone bill in the process.

Harper was already on parole after a 1995 bank robbery.
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