A trio of thieves stole a live shark from a Texas aquarium on Saturday, disguising the 1.5-foot predator as a baby and wheeling it out of the premises on a stroller.
In what appeared to be a premeditated heist, two men and one woman approached the open tank at the San Antonio Aquarium and fished out a horn shark, KSAT TV reports.
One man held the tail of the shark, while the other two suspects wrapped a wet blanket around it, according to Leon Valley Police Chief Joseph Salvaggio. The suspects took the fish into a backroom, put it into a bucket containing a bleach solution and then put the bucket into a stroller.
An employee witnessed these bizarre antics and immediately told aquarium managers.
When police were alerted, they were stupefied.
“When we first got the call, we thought it was kind of a hoax being that it was Shark Week last week,” Salvaggio said. “But it turns out someone actually went inside the aquarium there in Leon Valley and stole a horn shark.”
Aquarium general manager Jenny Spellman told KSAT TV she went to the parking lot to confront the trio about the shark theft. One of the men insisted his son was sick and that he needed to leave immediately. He drove away without the other man or the woman involved in the shark-snatching.
The San Antonio Police Department told FOX7 on Monday one suspect was apprehended and officers are working on a warrant to retrieve the pilfered shark. The suspect reportedly said the fish is being held in a 900 gallon tank.
Salvaggio said he’s not sure the shark will make it through the ordeal.
“We’ll be surprised if the shark survives. We sure hope it does, but being outside of that environment that it’s made to be in — the warm water, the salt water — there’s a good chance it won’t make it,” he said.
The suspects may face felony theft charges once caught.