Homeless Man to Keep $77,000 He Found on Riverbank

Man's rags-to-riches tale began with a lucky find of a bag full of cash and coins

By Sam Schulz
|  Thursday, Jun 14, 2012  |  Updated 3:51 PM EDT
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A homeless man in Texas gets to keep the $77,000 he found in a bag by a river.

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A bath in a river unexpectedly propelled one homeless Texas man from rags to riches — $77,000 of them.

Timothy Yost, 46, has been allowed to keep the bag of cash and coins he found on a riverbank in January, after nobody else claimed it from the cops, the Austin American-Statesman reported.

The city council of Bastrop, Texas, voted unanimously to give him back his life-changing find, after a city attorney told the council that a police investigation found no indication it had been involved in crimes.

Yost had told cops he was walking down the banks of the Colorado River to wash his feet on Jan. 18 when he came upon a bag.

He said he kicked it, heard jangling and then opened it to find 70 damp $100 bills and 40 Krugerrands, collectible South African gold coins. All told, the riches were worth $77,000, according to the American-Statesman.

Yost went to the bank to try to exchange the wet bills for dry ones, but the suspicious bank teller told him she couldn't exchange them until they dried — and then called the police.

Yost told police where he'd found the bag of money. They took it and gave him a claim receipt.

After a month in the police department's evidence room, the money sat around for another three months waiting to be claimed before a property hearing determined the rightful owner.

Yost, meanwhile, sued to get the money returned.

"It is a great day for Mr. Yost," the lawyer who represented him said on the council's decision.

There's just one more thing between Yost and his lucky find: Bars. He is currently in jail on charges of public intoxication and criminal trespassing and is awaiting release.

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