Teen finds purse filled with $10,000; hands it over to police

National News

A Santa Barbara teen is the definition of a Good Samaritan. 

He stumbled upon more money than he’d ever seen in his life — a bag of $10,000 cash. 

But he did the right thing. 

“I feel if everyone did the right thing the world would be a better place,” said Rhami Zeini. “Pulled over, went to the road, there’s nobody around, picked up the purse, I’m trying to find whose it was.”

On his way home from school, the 16-year-old noticed a black purse in the middle of the road in the turnpike area Wednesday. 

“Tried to find any identification is there a phone number I can call them return the purse,” he said. 

But the high school junior found something pretty important in there — more cash than he’s ever seen in his life. 

“We have seen people do the right thing many times before we had purses that of been dropped with large amounts of cash in them but I think this one was the first time that we had a purse with $10,000 in it,” said Kelly Hoover with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office. 

After consulting with his parents, the teen brought the precious cargo to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office. 

“To me I figured this is the right thing to do if I take it and find who’s purse it was because if the roles were reversed and I lost something with a significant sum of money I know I would want it back for sure,” Zeini said. 

The purse and cash have since been reunited with their rightful owner who is said to be very grateful. 

“This woman was going on a hike and she said she probably left it on the roof of her car and drove away and didn’t realize it,” said Hoover.

And as a reward, the woman gave Zeini $100.

“Just makes you feel good about humanity and that there are people out there that will do the right thing,” he said.

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