Video: Alleged "banana peel fraudster" needs psych exam

Image from overhead surveillance video in a Wash., D.C. Metro station elevator shows Maurice Owens, 42, standing next to a banana peel (circled), which he appears to have dropped on the floor himself, Aug. 8, 2013
Metro Transit Police via CBS DC

WASH, D.C. - A Maryland man who is accused of staging a fall on a banana peel in a DC Metro station, all so he could collect damages, has been ordered by a judge to undergo psychological screening, CBS DC reported.

The screening was ordered Tuesday after a request from an attorney for 42-year-old Maurice Owens of District Heights. Owens sued the transit agency for $15,000, claiming he injured his left leg and hip falling down in an elevator - because of the banana peel - at the Potomac Avenue station last August.
 But video captured by a security camera in the elevator seems to contradict Owens’ accident claim - the tape shows the floor was clear of any debris when he entered the elevator.

Moreover, the tape also shows Owens looking directly into the camera while holding an object in his hand, and then - voila - he steps back from the door and the yellow banana peel appears on the floor.

When the door opened, police say Owens thrust himself out of the elevator, purposely falling to the ground, and leaving the "guilty" banana peel as evidence.

CBS DC says Owens' claim against Metro transit was thrown out, and he was charged with felony second-degree fraud. He is considering a plea deal and is due to return to court Friday.