Indianapolis man finds sensitive documents in his backyard


INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) - Sensitive and personal information of thousands of Hoosiers is back in safe hands.

An Indianapolis man found stacks of documents in his backyard containing names, Social Security numbers and more.

Jon Collins contacted the attorney general's office right away about the documents.

Collins showed Eyewitness News where he found stacks of papers with information that no one would want in the wrong hands. He knows where they are from, but how they got in his backyard is a mystery.

"These were all filed through the Department of Workforce Development. That's where they were sent to and these are all 2015," said Collins.

First, Collins found wadded up paper in his backyard and then stumbled upon more paperwork. Eventually, he spread out the documents in his living room, because some of the paperwork was not only muddy, but wet.

The Army veteran's biggest concern is making sure identity thieves haven't used the information, especially since he's had some close calls of his own.

"I have had some exposure with people getting into things that they shouldn't be and there are Social Security numbers and stuff," he said.

Eventually, Collins talked on the phone with the attorney general's office. An Eyewitness News crew witnessed a representative from that office retrieving the documents from Collins' living room. The representative placed the sensitive paperwork in a plastic bag and then into a box marked "State of Indiana."

Collins also showed the rep where he found the documents. Still, he is left with a lot of questions about what he found and where.

"They've been in the system. How did they get out of the system and how did they get in my yard?" said Collins.

Since the documents contain Social Security numbers, the attorney general's office hopes to track down exactly how this happened. A spokesperson for the attorney general issued the following statement:

'The attorney general's office took possession of the documents and is now trying to determine the actual owner of the records and whether the documents would be considered abandoned records by law."

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