What’s a family man to do when confronted with $14,000 in cash abandoned on the side of the road?
With his two young sons hovering, Ohio resident Jake Bowers picked up a blue bag lying near the gutter, thinking it might contain a laptop, he told a local TV station.
“My wife was driving and I said, ‘Honey, turn around. There’s something in the road back there,” Bowers told WBNS-TV. “We grabbed the bag and the kids said, ‘What is it?’
“There were a couple [of] envelopes and … the corners were open and you could see inside that they were stuffed with hundred-dollar bills,” the dad said.
And without a backward glance, Bowers, his wife, and their boys went straight to the Worthington Police Department, where they dropped off the money.
“It was a good opportunity to teach the kids about doing the right thing,” Bowers said.
Officers found identification in the bag and tracked down the cash’s owner.
As it turns out, the man who’d been carrying all that money had gone to a local car dealer to purchase a vehicle, Lt. Michael Howlton told InsideEdition.com Tuesday.
But he ended up not buying anything and heading home.
“He thinks he may have left it on his roof when he drove off. He went back to the car lot, but of course they didn’t have it. A good Samaritan drove by, picked it up and brought it into the station,” Howlton said.
“There’s good people out there. Honest people,” he said.
And there are others who may not have all their wits about them.
“It’s not illegal to walk around with huge amounts of cash,” he said. “It’s not necessarily smart, but it’s not illegal.”
The money, all $100 bills, sat at police headquarters for five days before the man came to collect it.
“He had been traveling,” Howlton said.
Bowers said he wasn’t even tempted to keep the stash.
“While that money could have meant paying off our cars or going on a vacation... it may have meant groceries or sustenance to someone else,” he said.