The owners of a stolen 50-foot gorilla are offering a $1,000 reward for its return.
“We are quite sad here,” said Bob Hewitt, general manager of sales at Squamish’s Sea to Sky Ford, about the loss of their King Kong-like inflatable beast.
“We are offering the reward if we get our gorilla back, you’ve got to bring the gorilla.”
The gorilla, which Hewitt admits is nameless though a well recognized figure in the community, has been used for years to advertise car sales specials at the dealership. It used to fly from the roof of the dealership building just off the Sea to Sky Highway, but was recently moved to ground level to comply with sign bylaws. It was securely attached to pegs in the ground as well as car bumpers, though not padlocked to anything.
“It was strapped down quite substantially,” said Hewitt adding that it’s likely there was more than one person involved in the theft.
“It takes three to four of our guys to get it inflated because you have to hold all the straps and plug it in and so on.”
It usually takes about 10 minutes to inflate and deflate the 200 lb gorilla, which would cost over $4,000 to replace.
“You’ve got to jump on it to get all the air out,” said Hewitt.
The gorilla went missing sometime last Wednesday night and was reported to police Thursday, May 1.
Though the beast was stolen the air pump machinery and securing straps were left behind.
“There would have to be a lot of people with hefty lungs around if they wanted to blow it up,” said Hewitt.
“So we are looking for people who are exhausted.”
Anyone with information should contact the Squamish RCMP at 604-892-6100 or Crime-Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 .
RCMP Cpl. Dave Ritchie said police are looking for the thieves.
“We don’t know if this is a theft for somebody to use for a prank or a theft for other reasons, but the gorilla is gone and anybody who may have noticed him being deflated, we would like to hear from them,” he said.
Squamish police are also continuing to investigate the assault of a good Samaritan who was forced into a clothing-recycling bin and locked there for several hours April 28.
“We have followed up on a couple of Crime-Stoppers tips and they didn’t pan out but we are still hoping that we will get somewhere on that case,” said Ritchie.
“We are still looking for help on that.”