Police were on alert after the @HiddenCash social media scavenger hunt returned to Southern California Thursday.
In what police said was “controlled chaos,” hundreds of people flocked to Penn Park in Whittier Thursday night to find money hidden inside PEZ dispensers between 9 p.m and 11 p.m.
A series of tweets from the @HiddenCash account gave followers clues to where the money would be.
"The intentions of those that are doing it are good natured," Whittier Police Lt. Kent Miller said. "There’s always peripheral impacts on communities like this."
Because of the large amount of people rushing to the park, traffic in the area was affected. The large group was also described as “rowdy,” thus creating a lot of noise in a usually quiet neighborhood.
There were also reports of trampled bushes. Police had to call for back up, which some say was a drain on resources.
Whittier police were caught off guard by the scavenger hunt and had to call in and keep officers on, for overtime. The Los Angeles Sheriff Office divisions of Pico Rivera, Norwalk and Santa Fe Springs were also called in for backup.
"I sympathize with both sides of it," Lt. Miller said. "It’s always nice to have free money, but at the same time, it's resources that are being used and drained to try and get people under control."
There were about a half a dozen police officers on duty overnight and in the early morning Friday because of Thursday night's craze.
Police weren’t the only ones unhappy with last night’s behavior. San Francisco real estate investor Jason Buzi, The man behind @HiddenCash, was also concerned.
"So no more night drops? Totally different energy. This morning was awesome. Tonight, not so much," Buzi said, referencing a daytime money hunt in Van Nuys.
No major incidents or arrests were reported.
In late May, a similar frenzy ensued when the @HiddenCash clues led Angelenos to Burbank.Thousands of people trampled over each other in parking lots and ran into moving traffic in the midst of the search in a scene that was described as chaotic.
Another Southern California money drop is expected Friday. Hidden Cash is scheduled to tweet clues toward a hunt in Orange County at 10 a.m.
Samia Khan contributed to this report.