Kids Get to Keep $98,000 They Found

Three Boulder County, Colo., children did the right thing back in February, and now, six months later, they are getting their reward -- $98,000.

The children were walking through a field on Feb. 14 when they came across a duffel bag. When they opened it up, they found it was filled with stacks of bills.

The bag appeared to have been left in the field for some time and the bills were wet and moldy, police said.

At first, the children took the money home, but then they turned it in to the Boulder County Sheriff's Office.

Because it had been outside and unburied for so long, some of the bills were very fragile, Sgt. Mike Dimond of the Boulder County Sheriff's Office said. It took technicians more than a full day to pry the bills apart, dry them and count them.

Police at first thought the kids' find could have been drug money, and Boulder police passed on information about the discovery to other law enforcement agencies, the FBI and the Secret Service to see if they could link the money to any illegal activity.

Neither the Boulder police nor any of the other agencies was able to connect the money to any current case, and since no one reported it missing, authorities decided to give it back to the children.

Still, given the possible source of the money and the parents' request for privacy, the sheriff's office has not identified the children who discovered the money or the specific location where it was found.

The sheriff's office presented checks totaling $98,100 to the parents of the three children on Tuesday.

"The kids are dividing it among themselves," the mother of one of the children told the Boulder Daily Camera on condition of anonymity. "It is a pretty good start on college savings, so they are happy about that.

"For their small minds, they don't understand how much it is," she said. "It is a huge, wonderful gift. They probably won't realize what a great deal this is until they go to college."

It is the largest amount of money ever found in Boulder and turned in, police said.

ABC News affiliate KMGH-TV in Denver contributed to this report.