Wednesday, June 18, 2008
$20 Bills from DB Cooper Skyjacking sell for $37,000
Fifteen tattered $20 bills recovered from the 1971 D.B. Cooper skyjacking sold Friday for more than 120 times their face value at a Dallas auction.
Heritage Auction Galleries said the bills sold for a total of more than $37,000 - two to three times higher than expected.
Winning bidders paid about $6,500 each for two of the $20 bills. The money has the handwritten initials of investigators who examined the bills, which were found buried in sand in 1980.
Another recovered note, a tiny fragment showing only a portion of the printed San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank seal in the design, sold for $358.
Cooper skyjacked a flight from Portland, Ore., to Seattle, claiming he had a bomb. He released the passengers at a Seattle airport for $200,000, four parachutes and a flight to Mexico.
On that flight, he jumped out with a parachute near the Oregon-Washington line. He was never found.
“There’s obviously still tremendous interest in the legendary case,” Heritage President Greg Rohan said in a statement. The gallery declined to identify the winning bidders.
“I was 10 years old when it happened and I remember it like it was yesterday, sitting at the family Thanksgiving table in West Seattle hearing the news. I’ve always wondered if Cooper lived the high life for a while or became bear food,” Rohan said.
Brian Ingram of Mena, Ark., consigned the notes to Heritage. He was 8 years old when he found three bundles of deteriorating $20 bills on the shore of the Columbia River near Portland, Ore.
The FBI matched the serial numbers and kept 13 bills in case it ever prosecutes the Cooper case.