Couple Finds Safe Buried in Backyard With $52,000 Worth of Cash And Jewelry Inside


Do you know every inch of your own property? If you have a yard, or land of any sort, do you know exactly what’s on it?

Oftentimes the familiarity of a thing can cause you to assume you know it backward and forward. It’s like having a really close friend and being shocked when you learn something new about them after years of knowing them.

Matthew Emanuel made a surprising discovery recently in his Staten Island backyard: Nestled in among a row of trees was a large silver box.

He’d always assumed that it was a power box of some sort or something.

It was usually hidden, but recently came back into view when some deer ate the lower foliage of the trees hiding it.

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Emanuel wanted to redo the backyard and put bamboo in instead of the trees lining the property. As they dug the old plants out, they moved the box, too.

To their surprise, it was a safe. The next question, obviously, was what is in the safe?

It doesn’t look like much in the photo, but looks can be deceiving. There were soggy, rotting hundred dollar bills alongside baggies of expensive jewelry.

Would you have returned this property to its rightful owners?

“And there are all these bags with hundreds and jewelry, diamonds, engagement rings, dozens of rings, gold with jade,” Emanuel said. “It was stunning.”

Along with the treasures, Emanuel saw an address. It was his neighbor’s.

“First I knocked on the door and I asked them if they were ever robbed and they said they were,” he said.

Apparently his neighbors had been robbed in 2011 and the safe had been taken. The authorities had warned them they’d never see their belongings again, and over the next seven years they’d come to accept that.

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All in all the safe contained about $52,000 worth of goods. Like a good neighbor, Matthew and his wife Maria returned the safe and its contents to its rightful owners.

“A couple of people asked us, ‘Why did you return it?’” Maria said. “It wasn’t even a question. It wasn’t ours.”

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