Ring Finder Sues Owner for Fraud After Being Arrested Returning Ring

A woman in Missouri has sued the owner of a diamond ring that was found at a tanning salon after the owner failed to provide the reward that was advertised.

Bonnie Land, of St. Charles, filed the lawsuit after she was arrested when she went to return the ring several weeks after finding it - she claims she had forgotten the ring was in her pocket.

Local reports indicate that Land found the ring at The Tan Company on May 9, and forgot to leave the ring at the front desk. She realized she still had the ring after she discovered it in her jacket pocket a few weeks after. The ring is a two-carat yellow diamond surrounded by 27 smaller white diamonds.

"I'm not a thief; the worst thing I think I've ever done is speeding," Land, 34, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "But this called my whole character into question."

Land went back to the salon about a month later and saw a sign with a picture of the ring offering a $3,000 reward for its return. Land contacted the ring's owner, Melisa Boucek, and the two agreed to meet the following day at the jewelry store where it had been appraised.

When Land arrived at the store police were already waiting and took Land in for questioning before charging her with theft roughly six weeks later.

Land's lawsuit is seeking $66,500 for breach of contract, fraud and damages while the theft charges have been deferred by the St. Charles County prosecutor due in part because the ring was returned.

"I felt so guilty about having it that I just rolled it up in some tissue and put it in a back pocket of my purse," Land told AP. "I didn't know how to take it back."

St. Charles police Detective Mike Myers said the case could have been easily resolved if the missing ring was reported to the salon's staff immediately.

"It was found in a room that only was used by one person at a time," Myers told AP. "Even if it was a week later, why not just go back to the place and say, 'Hey, has anybody reported this missing?'"