A woman lost $1,400 in cash at Circle K but store video surveillance and police work ultimately led to most of it being returned.
By Jon Johnson
SAFFORD – A woman accidentally dropped an envelope with $1,400 in cash while shopping at a local convenience store Thursday, March 8, but after some police work most of the money was returned.
Officers were dispatched at about 12:06 p.m. to the Circle K at 1123 W. Thatcher Blvd. regarding the incident. The victim reportedly said she had been shopping in the store and used cash from a paper bank envelope. After leaving the store, she realized she had lost the envelope.
Surveillance footage showed the victim paying for her goods and as she exited and attempted to put the envelope into her back pocket it fell out onto the store’s floor, just inside the doors.
Another customer, later identified as Kevin Phillips, was viewed on the surveillance footage as seeing the envelope fall to the ground. He then paid for his items and as he left he knelt down and picked up the money. The time between the victim losing the money and Phillips picking it up was less than a minute, and the victim said she would have been in the parking lot the entire time. Instead of attempting to locate the victim and give her the money she lost, Phillips left the area.
The Safford officer learned Phillips may reside in Pima, and a Pima officer assisted in finding the residence. Once there, officers spoke with a relative who advised Phillips was in Morenci.
The Safford officer then called Phillips on the phone and told him he needed to return the money. Phillips agreed to meet a Greenlee County deputy at the Bashas’ in Morenci and returned all of the money except for a small portion, which he had spent on gas and a $5 loan to a friend, according to the deputy.
The deputy then transported the money to the Greenlee County line, where the Safford officer retrieved it and returned $1,385 to the victim, according to the report.
The officer noted that charges against Price were pending contact with the suspect.