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VANCOUVER, Wash. — A woman in Washington state said she took a $20 bill out of an ATM and ended up in the middle of a fraud investigation.


Sarah Stephens said when she used the bill to pay for gas, the attendant said it was a fake and called the police.


On July 26, she said she got money from a bank machine and gave a $20 bill to her grandson to pay for gas at a local station.


“All of a sudden, I heard the guy yelling, waving the $20 bill, so I went in to see what was going on,” she said.


Cashier Jose Flores told KPTV in Portland, Ore., that the bill looked funny and had a different texture. He said he marked it with a special counterfeit detection pen. The pen leaves regular money with a yellow mark. The ink is black on fake bills.


“It stayed black,” Stephens said. “It was definitely a fake $20 bill.”


Flores said he was required to call Vancouver police, who came out and confiscated the bill. They later contacted the Secret Service, the federal agency in charge of counterfeit money investigations.


Stephens said she doesn’t understand how the money she got from an ATM could possibly be counterfeit.


U.S. Bank said its cash usually comes from the vault and they were investigating the incident. The bank also called Stephens and said it was crediting her $20.

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