This story takes the phrase “hardened criminal” to a whole new level!
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Deputy Joe Garza of the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office in West Creek, Texas was out on patrol when he spotted something a bit out of place. A large tortoise was making his slow way down the street, seemingly unbothered by the hustle and bustle of the city around him.
Luckily for the tortoise, Deputy Garza recognized him as a repeat offender who had escaped his enclosure back in 2021! He called his supervisor, who was the same sergeant who found the missing reptile two years earlier. Together, the officers located the tortoise’s file and found his address.
Deputy Garza hefted the 60-pound criminal into the back of his patrol car and took him home.
Mayda Garcia and her family have owned Seashell the tortoise for the past 15 years. Although they provide him with his own backyard, lots of treats and toys, and unlimited love, the silly tortoise always manages to find his way outside of his enclosure! In 2021, it was a broken fence post that granted Seashell his temporary freedom, but he has managed to get out in other ways, too.
The family had been missing Seashell for a few days, even putting up flyers in case anyone spotted him while he was on the lam.
Once Seashell was safely back at home, the officers had some fun with the whole affair. They even created an “Official Tortoise Wrangler” certificate for Deputy Garza.
“Seashell absconded from his enclosure and was captured without incident,” the certificate states. “This is officially the slowest foot pursuit ever conducted by a Bexar County Deputy.”
Silly tortoise! While we’re glad Seashell made it back home safe and sound, we have to hope his wandering days are behind him. If he ever does get out again, the local cops know right where he belongs.
Share this story if you think runaway tortoises are the best kind of law-breakers.
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