Someone -- or in this case something -- was watching over the Good Samaritan whose act of kindness almost landed him in jail Monday.
Around 8:15 a.m., Stanley Davis of Camden noticed a wallet containing $600 in cash inside the north Hilton Head Island Shell Station, 165 William Hilton Parkway.
At first he thought it belonged to his supervisor at the town's Horseshoe Road construction project next door, so he took the wallet and set off to track down his boss. When it became clear the wallet didn't belong to him, Davis returned to the store and gave the wallet to the gas station clerk. Davis then left to go back to work.
Meanwhile, the wallet's owner had returned to the store to claim it. The clerk told him she didn't have it.
That's when a Beaufort County Sheriff's deputy arrived.
The 21-year-old gas station employee described Davis as the man who stole the wallet. And, initially, the store's security camera seemed to confirm that. The tape showed Davis leaving with the wallet.
Based on the evidence, the officer confronted Davis.
Thank goodness for the fast-forward button.
The tape showed Davis returning the wallet to the clerk about five minutes after he'd initially left with it. It showed the clerk looking at the cash inside before stowing the wallet beneath the counter, the report stated.
Confronted with the complete picture, the woman -- who lives in Shady Glen in Bluffton -- retrieved the wallet and was charged with petit larceny. She also is suspected of stealing money from the store's till, according to the report.
She was being held on $1,088 bond at the county jail Tuesday night. The Island Packet normally does not report the names of those charged with misdemeanors.
"It was a really strange situation," said Frankie Nobles, Davis' boss at U.S. Group, Inc. "This guy is a church-going fellow and the next thing you know, they're going to put the guy who returned the wallet in jail."
The owner of the wallet didn't even thank Davis for turning it in, according to Nobles.
Despite the trouble his good deed brought him, Davis remains positive, even about the woman who almost got him thrown into the slammer.
"I didn't get an apology or anything like that, but it's not a big deal," the heavy equipment operator said. "I just pray that everything works out for the girl who stole it. Maybe she'll learn from it and make some changes in her life. Hopefully, it'll turn out to be a blessing."