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Waitress Finds $1K and Returns It to 'Owner' – But Her Good Samaritan Moment Comes With a Twist


"He sounded very sincere."

A Florida waitress’ attempt to do a good deed may have ended happily, but not the way she expected.

A Florida waitress mistakenly handed $1,000 to a patron whom she thought left it in her section. Luckily, the man returned the money. (Image source: WBBH-TV)

Samantha Knight found $1,000 last week while she was clearing a table at the Laishley Crab House in Punta Gorda, Fla. Without stopping to count the money, Knight raced to return it to the person she thought was the rightful owner.

That's where things took an unfortunate turn: She returned the money to the wrong person, as she later found out when the real owner, Chuck Behm of Chicago, came in looking for his money.

Knight had no idea who the mistaken patron was and police couldn’t find him because he paid in cash.

But then there was a breakthrough: The mistaken hand-off was caught on the restaurant’s security cameras. The restaurant reached out to local news station WBBH-TV with images of the mystery man in an attempt to get the money back.

Luckily, the man eventually returned to the restaurant and returned the cash, reportedly telling Knight he honestly didn’t realize the money wasn’t his until he saw his image on the evening news. Explaining that he was also carrying a large wad of cash, the man said the whole ordeal was just a big misunderstanding.

Restaurant security cameras caught the mistaken hand-off on camera (Image source: WHHB-TV)

"This morning the guy came in and returned it to me," Knight told the New York Daily News. "He's from Delaware and came in from out of town. He had a wad of money in his pocket as well."

"He sounded very sincere," she said. "He gave me another 100 dollars on top of that for my troubles."

Knight waited on both men.

And this is where the story has a happy ending: Before the entire ordeal got cleared up, Behm told Knight she could keep the $1,000 if it was ever returned. He told her to consider it a Christmas present.

"I called him this morning and let him know," Knight told The News. "He said, 'It's yours to keep.'"

For an expectant mother earning a waitresses’ income, the $1,000 was probably a welcome gift indeed.


Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter


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