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Santa Barbara Teen Stumbles Onto $10K In Cash, Turns It In

SANTA BARBARA (CBSLA) – A Santa Barbara teenager who discovered a purse with $10,000 in cash this week while walking home from school returned all the money to its rightful owner.

Santa Barbara Teen Stumbles Onto $10,000 In Cash, Turns It In
16-year-old Rhami Zeini of Santa Barbara, Calif., found a purse containing $10,000 in cash while walking home from school on Sept. 12, 2018. He turned in the purse to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, who was able to find its owner. (Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office)

According to CBS affiliate KCOY-TV, high school junior Rhami Zeini was walking home from school in the Turnpike area Wednesday when he came upon the purse in the middle of the road. When he opened it to check for identification, he found $10,000 in cash inside.

Zeini told KCOY that he spoke to his parents and then brought the purse to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office.

Santa Barbara Teen Stumbles Onto $10,000 In Cash, Turns It In
16-year-old Rhami Zeini of Santa Barbara, Calif., found a purse containing $10,000 in cash while walking home from school on Sept. 12, 2018. He turned in the purse to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, who was able to find its owner. (Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office)

"What a great example of doing the right thing even when no one is watching," the sheriff's department tweeted late Friday night.

Deputies were able to contact the woman who owns the purse and return the money. As a reward, she gave Zeini $100, KCOY reports.

A sheriff's spokesperson told KCOY that the woman may have forgotten the purse on the roof of her car and drove away.

"I figured this is the right thing to do -- if I take it and find whoever's purse it was -- because, if the roles were reversed, and I had lost something with a significant sum of money inside, I know I would want it back for sure," Zeini told KCOY.

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