Police arrested a man they said robbed a Bank of America branch after asking the teller why he had a negative balance in his checking account.

James Patrick Andrews, 43, entered the branch at 2335 34th Street North last Friday morning and tried to use his ATM card in the bank. When he learned there was no money in his account, police said, he approached a teller and asked her why.

According to the arrest report, Andrews then passed a note to the teller demanding $1,000. He told her not to walk away from her window or press any alarm button or people in the lobby would be hurt. No weapon was implied or seen, police said.

The teller complied, and Andrews left the bank with an undisclosed amount of money and got into a Hyundai Sonata driven by another man, the report said.

Police pulled over the car about an hour later at 38th Avenue North and 34th Street and found it occupied by a woman and her three children. The woman was questioned and said her boyfriend had used the car earlier to give Andrews a ride to the bank, police said.

The boyfriend confirmed he gave Andrews a ride, but said he had no idea Andrews had robbed the bank, police said.

Police said they tracked Andrews to a motel on 34th Street North, where they saw him take a cab to a Hess gas station. That's where Andrews was arrested Friday afternoon.

According to the report, Andrews admitted to the robbery and said he needed the money to pay a drug debt. He was charged with strong-arm robbery and possession of crack cocaine and drug paraphernalia.