An armored truck dropped bags of cash on a California highway on Friday morning, leading to chaos in the traffic. According to a report by local ABC News affiliate ABC6, the truck traveling on Interstate 5 from San Diego towards a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. office when one of its doors popped open near Carlsbad. Commuters behind it stopped traffic in their scramble to pick up the loose money.
"One of the doors popped open and bags of cash fell out," explained California Highway Patrol Sgt. Curtis Martin to reporters. Witnesses said the bags were filled with mainly $1 and $20 bills and that they split open on the pavement, scattering bills in the wind. As drivers saw them, cars screeched to a halt, and people ran across the high-speed lanes with wild abandon trying to scoop up cash. One witness thought to take a video, which has since gone viral on social media.
An armored truck in San Diego spills cash all over the freewaypic.twitter.com/Oi63ChZW73— Fifty Shades of Whey (@davenewworld_2) November 20, 2021
As whimsical as the moment seemed, Martin warns that anyone found to have taken cash from the scene could face criminal charges. He said that two people were arrested at the scene, and the videos taken by bystanders will be used by the state police and FBI to identify as many others as possible. He urged people to turn the money in at the CHP office in Vista, California.
The cash spill happened at about 9:15 a.m. local time, and the highway was closed until about 11 a.m. So far, authorities have not disclosed how much money was lost, but much of it has already been turned in. Martin said that at least 12 people came forward by the end of the day.
"People are bringing in a lot. People got a lot of money," he said.
Of course, many commenters online have said that they are incensed by the threat of legal action against people who simply found unmarked money on the ground. They believe that the police are working too hard to protect corporate property that was lost by simple negligence.
"But what about finders keepers, losers weepers? I feel like all my childhood mottos were just lies," one person wrote on Reddit. Another added: "I think the issue is that most people probably think that what they're doing is legal," while a third speculated: "I don't think a judge would allow this video to be used as evidence anyways. This video would be considered complete character assassination and very damning to the defenses case."