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Shark Stolen in Baby Stroller

San Antonio, Texas —(Map)

Visitors to a Texas aquarium stole a small shark on Saturday. They wrapped it in a towel, put it in a baby stroller, and rolled it out of the building. The shark was later found, and returned to the aquarium, unhurt.

The San Antonio Aquarium is a place where people can see live animals from the sea, swimming or simply living in their tanks. The aquarium has some animals, including sharks, that they allow people to touch sometimes.

Horn shark
Horn sharks can grow to about 39 inches (1 meter)
They are usually harmless to humans.
(Source: Cymothoa exigua, from Wikimedia Commons.)

“Miss Helen” is the aquarium’s 16 inch (41 centimeter) gray Horn Shark. Horn sharks are generally harmless to humans. They eat small sea animals with shells and smaller fish. They can grow to about 39 inches (1 meter) long.

On Saturday, two men and a woman came into the aquarium pushing a baby stroller. What the group did was recorded on the aquarium’s security camera.

The group spent about an hour near a “shark touch” tank, just waiting.

A shark touch tank.
A shark touch tank.
This picture is from the Newport Aquarium.
(Source: Sean Biehle, via Wikimedia Commons.)

When the aquarium workers were looking the other way, the thieves saw their chance. The men used a net to fish the shark from the tank. They wrapped the shark in a wet towel, and then the two men went into a back room at the aquarium.

Picture of men stealing shark.
This picture is from the security camera at the San Antonio Aquarium.
(Source: Ammon Covino, San Antonio Aquarium.)

Only aquarium workers were supposed to come in the back room, but the men were looking for something to help them carry the shark. They found a bucket used for cleaning tools and emptied it out. They put the shark in the bucket, came back out, and put the bucket in the stroller and quickly left the aquarium.

baby stroller
The group used a baby stroller to sneak the shark out of the aquarium.
(Source: katorisi, from Wikimedia Commons.)

One of the workers at the aquarium thought something was wrong and followed the group outside. But they refused to let the worker look in their truck.

Later, the police were able to find the home of the man who drove the truck. They found Miss Helen in a tank in the man’s house. She was just fine.

The police said the man had many tanks with other sea animals in his house and in his garage.

The San Antonio Aquarium is glad to have Miss Helen back.

The San Antonio Aquarium is glad to have Miss Helen back. They are also happy that they solved another problem caused by the shark thieves.

When the men dumped the bucket so that they could carry Miss Helen, they put dangerous chemicals into the system that cleans the water for many of the tanks. The people at the aquarium worked quickly to deal with this. If they had not, many sea creatures, such as seahorses, jellyfish, and others might have died.


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