Have you ever noticed that people don’t want to give you a bunch of money?
Folks at the Dunwoody Police Department know the feeling. Lately, they’ve been waiting for people to return cash scooped from the side of I-285 on July 9 when an armored truck’s door flew open, sending bills flying. But few people have showed up, even after police promised not to file any charges for those who surrendered the cash.
Police said the company that owns the truck, GardaWorld, still hasn’t figured out why the door swung open on the road. But the company doesn’t think there was any “foul play” involved, according to Sgt. Robert Parsons.
Workers told cops they thought they lost more than $175,000, picked up by dozens of passersby who stopped on the busy highway. As of late last week, Parsons said drivers had only returned $6,000.
About nine people have returned cash. Most told police their conscience had gotten the better of them, Parsons said. One was a guy said he realized he’d be an easy target for prosecution because he was driving a company vehicle, with logos plastered on the sides, when he took the money. Several people took videos of the scene.
Investigators would charge the money-grabbers with theft, Parsons said, because it was “pretty apparent” the cash had come from the truck. As officers were stuck in traffic trying to get to the scene, GardaWorld workers were trying to pick up money before passersby could. By the time the cops got there, the money was nearly all gone, and the investigator assigned to the case had a tough job.
Parsons said the videos are mostly shot from far enough off that license plates can’t be read, making it difficult to identify the people who took the cash. And even if police could identify someone on the video, it might be near impossible to determine how much the person got.
“It’s gonna be hard for us to prove who took what — even, frankly, for the people who brought money in,” Parsons said. “We had one person who came into the lobby with $10 or less. Who’s to say they didn’t really get $10,000?”
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.
Download the new AJC app. More local news, more breaking news and in-depth journalism. AJC.com. Atlanta. News. Now.
Download the new AJC app. More local news, more breaking news and in-depth journalism.
With the largest team in the state, the AJC reports what’s really going on with your tax dollars and your elected officials. Subscribe today. Visit the AJC's Georgia Navigator for the latest in Georgia politics.
Your subscription to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism. Visit the AJC's Georgia Navigator for the latest in Georgia politics.