$100 bills under windshield wipers in metro Atlanta. Is it really happening?

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Arizona's Family Investigates identified several questionable projects funded in Arizona by the American Rescue Plan funds.(Arizona's Family)
Published: Apr. 25, 2022 at 4:13 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) - Many people are wondering if there’s a $100 bill fairy running around Newton County after a social media post by the Newtown County Sheriff’s Office.

NCSO says they have received “some calls from concerned citizens” about fake $100 bills being left under windshield wipers of cars parked in local driveways.

According to the Sheriff’s Office’s Facebook post, the bills look and feel real, but they are not. Instead, they are advising residents to NOT approach their car and call 911 immediately.

NCSO also said it is unsure of the motive.

According to various articles and warnings posted online, fake money is used by car thieves. The alleged goal is for the target to notice the money after they get in and put the keys in the ignition. The hope is that the driver will exit the car to remove the fake money and the thief will hop in and take off with the car.

However, Snopes.com says the above possibility is highly unlikely. Snopes says that some form of this “carjacking” alert has been floating around the Internet for many years and they’ve yet to read one report where this scenario was reported.

Another suggestion found on the internet is that the fake money is being used by sex traffickers. The money is supposedly laced with a “debilitating substance” and once a person touches it, they are incapacitated and easier to kidnap. This particular scenario has been widely shared on social media.

Yet another reason that has been given for the fake bills is related to counterfeiting. Some believe that the fake bills are left in hopes that ordinary citizens will use the fake money at local businesses and financial institutions. If they are not arrested, the counterfeiters will somehow know that their fake money is being accepted as the real thing.

So, if you should see what appears to be money tucked under your wiper and you weren’t expecting someone to leave it for you, either call NCSO as suggested or, if you have already started your car, just drive away and either wait for it to fly away on its own or retrieve it in a safe manner further down the road.

The Newton County Sheriff’s Office says they have not received any reports of criminal activity related to the fake money at this time. The photo of the money posted by the Sheriff’s Office was also provided to them.