Bus Driver Returns $50K

By Ron Fanfair, Toronto Police Service Published: 10:20 a.m. May 9, 2016
Updated: 11:02 a.m. May 9, 2016

A TTC rider will be forever grateful to a Toronto Transit Commissioner (TTC) operator for his honesty.

A man in TPS uniform holding a certificate beside a man in TTC uniform
Superintendent John Tanouye gave TTC Operator Daniel Clavette a certificate recognizing his honesty and integrity

Assigned to the 9 Bellamy bus route on May 2, Daniel Clavette was approached by an elderly man with a bag he said he found on the bus seat.

“It was around 5.15 p.m. and I was approaching Eglinton Ave. E. going northbound to Scarborough Centre,” recalled Clavette. “I knew I would have a little time when I got there to open it and see if there a piece of identification so we could contact the owner.”

Passengers leave clothing, umbrellas and grocery items regularly on city buses.

What the driver saw in the bag blew him away.

“There were some folders with funeral information, a passport and two large TD bank envelopes,” said Clavette. “When I opened one the envelopes, I saw there were $100 bills and I assumed there bundles of $10,000.”

The driver immediately contacted his supervisor, informing him that a large amount of money was on his bus.

The bag contained $50,000.

TTC Operator Daniel Clavette talks about finding $50,000 on his bus

We are proud of Daniel and his integrity, honesty and professionalism in representing the TTC so well

At around the same time the TTC was on the phone informing police they had just recovered a bag full of money on one of their buses, the bag owner was at 41 Division reporting his loss. 

“It was pure coincidence and he was very ecstatic when we told him his money was in a safe place,” said 41 Division unit commander John Tanouye. “The money had something to do with an inheritance he was taking home.”

Clavette was recognized for his good deed with a certificate handed over by Tanouye with a handshake on Friday, May 6 at 41 Division in Scarborough.

“We are proud of Daniel and his integrity, honesty and professionalism in representing the TTC so well,” said TTC corporate communications executive director Brad Ross.

A TTC employee for nine years, Clavette said returning the money was the right thing to do.

“I don’t consider myself a role model because of this,” he added. “I was just doing my job and being honest, which is what the TTC trains us do to.” 

Superintendent John Tanouye gives a certificate of thanks to TTC operator Daniel Clavette for returning $50,000 left on his bus
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