Stolen shark returned to aquarium in San Antonio

Casey GreeneAug 01, 2018

Two men have confessed to snatching a small shark from a Texas aquarium's interactive touch tank then whisking it away, wrapping in a blanket and concealing in a baby stroller, police say.

Floor-to-ceiling tanks filled with exotic marine animals greeted stunned police officers who stepped into the house of a man arrested for stealing a shark from a local aquarium - using a stroller.

Salvaggio said one of the men grabbed the shark by its tail while another wrapped it in a wet blanket, went into a back room, put the shark in a bucket and put the bucket in the stroller. She said the shark is less than 1 year old.

Police traced the truck Monday and found the shark in a nearby home. The woman is yet to be questioned, but all three could face federal charges.

The female shark, named Helen, thankfully survived and was brought back to the aquarium.

Monday night, the aquarium announced that employees were on their way to retrieve Miss Helen - and she was alive.

A man allegedly posted a picture of a horn shark online under the caption "selling a horn shark, flawless for next shark week".

Police said the shark was carried in the pram in a bucket.

Spellman said her reaction was "just absolute shock".

The man who reached into the tank and pulled out the shark, as seen in the video, was arrested.

They said it's remarkable considering this species of sharks can live about an hour out of water if they're lucky. She asked to search their vehicle, the suspects fled and aquarium staff gave the license plate number to the police. "And when we got into the garage and into the house, it looked like nearly a mock-up of (the aquarium)", he said.

"I guess it's pretty hardy animal, but we're putting it in quarantine to see how it does", he said. The next step, he said, is to acclimate "Ms. Helen" into the water. "Obviously, he likes those types of animals".

"The Leon Valley Police Department Criminal Investigations Division has been in contact with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) investigators concerning the theft of this marine animal".

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