(Meredith/WLNY) – A New York couple made the discovery of a lifetime after they found a hidden safe filled with cash and jewels in their backyard.
“You dream as a kid that you find buried treasure and it happened. It was unbelievable,” Matthew Emanuel, the homeowner, told WLNY.
Emanuel said he and his wife, Maria, have lived in their home for four years. They’ve noticed the box before but thought it belonged to the cable company, so they never bothered inspecting it.
“I thought it was an electrical box,” Emanuel said. “I didn’t know what it was.” He and his wife only discovered the safe’s true contents when they decided to replace the trees in their yard. They called a crew to help them and that’s when the discovered it wasn’t an electrical box, but a rusting, peeling, weathered safe.
Inside, they found diamonds, engagement rings, gold with jade and cash. But they found something even more interesting: a piece of paper with an address, an address that matched their neighbor’s.
“I knocked on the door and I asked them if they were ever robbed,” Emanuel said. “They said they were.”
Police said there was a burglary at the home in 2011 and a safe containing about $52,000 worth of property was stolen. The safe and its contents were returned to its rightful owners, who were extremely grateful.
Maria said some people had asked them why they returned the safe in the first place instead of keeping it.
“It wasn’t even a question,” she said. “It wasn’t ours.”