Pine River teen reflects on found money

Incident from fall comes to light.

Photo illustration, Shutterstock, Inc.

What would most people do if they found a large sum of money on the street?

Thirteen year old Miah Knutson of Pine River had to ask what she would do this fall when she and some friends found a bank envelope packed with over $2,000 at the stop sign near the dam in Pine River while hanging out with friends.

"My friends and I were hanging out around the dam in Pine River," she said. "I was riding a bike and I rode past it thinking it was trash. Then when my friends walked past it they saw there was money sticking out of it."

Several thoughts ran through her mind. She admitted she couldn't help but think of what she could do with that kind of money. They thought about leaving it behind, worrying it might be connected to something illicit.

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"I got kind of scared because at first I thought it was drug money," Knutson said. "I was like, we shouldn't be touching this."

Knutson said her parents had told her what to do in situations like this. Turn it in to the police. That's what she did.

Pine River Police Chief Paul Sand said the owner reported the money missing and - thanks to Knutson - was reunited with it. As thanks, they gave her a reward, but chose to remain anonymous. Likewise, Knutson's friends chose not to be interviewed.

Knutson said she realizes the money was likely very important to the person who had misplaced it.

"It was really important to them and it honestly felt really good," Knutson said of returning the money.

Sand commended her for doing the right thing.

"I thought it was a heck of a deal that a young lady found the money and turned it in," Sand said.

Travis Grimler is a staff writer for the Pineandlakes Echo Journal weekly newspaper in Pequot Lakes/Pine River. He may be reached at 218-855-5853 or

Travis Grimler began work at the Echo Journal Jan. 2 of 2013 while the publication was still split in two as the Pine River Journal and Lake Country Echo. He is a full time reporter/photographer/videographer for the paper and operates primarily out of the northern stretch of the coverage area (Hackensack to Jenkins).
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