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Monkey stolen from San Francisco Zoo is returned unharmed

January 1, 2012 |  5:33 am

Banana Sam squirrell monkey escaped from San Francisco Zoo

A 2-pound squirrel monkey stolen from the San Francisco Zoo was returned late Saturday unharmed.

The monkey was found by a passerby in a San Francisco park. Police took the monkey and brought it back to the zoo, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Banana Sam, 17 years old, disappeared Friday after vandals cut two holes into the mesh of the squirrel monkey exhibit.

The monkey arrived at the zoo with 20 other squirrel monkeys after a local research program ended.

His theft prompted a frantic search. "He is a valued member of the zoo, and we wish for a safe and speedy return," officials said in their announcement.

There was no word on who took the monkey.

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--  Esmeralda Bermudez and Shelby Grad

Photo: Banana Sam, a 2-pound squirrel monkey. Credit: San Francisco Zoo

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