An off-duty officer with the California Highway Patrol returned more than $120,000 in cash after finding two bank bags in the middle of a busy roadway, saying it was simply "the right thing to do."
The officer, who did not want to be identified, told reporters Monday that she stopped her personal vehicle after swerving around the bags of cash in the middle of Concord Boulevard, and then turned around to investigate, according to NBC Bay Area
She opened one of the bags and discovered they were "full of money," CHP spokesman John Fransen told reporters.
Fransen said that's when the sergeant, a 20-year highway patrol veteran, alerted law enforcement and turned over the money to Concord Police.
Police identified the owner as a 31-year-old man who had recently reported losing his $120,000 life savings, according to The Associated Press.
"I am paid to uphold the law and it's my job to set the example whether I'm working or not," the sergeant said. "I am happy to hear the rightful owner was identified and that the money has been returned."
Avery Browne, chief of the California Highway Patrol's Golden Gate Division, told reporters it was great to talk about officers doing something positive even though the sergeant was not on duty, according to KTVU-TV.
"On too many occasions our personnel do not pause to be recognized as they feel they were simply doing their job," Browne said.
The case is similar to another California incident in June where Joe Cornell, a recovering alcoholic, returned $125,000 that fell off a Brinks armored truck
in Fresno. He received a $5,000 reward from the company for returning the money.
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