Stolen Bull Mascot Returned To Bloomingdale High
TAMPA - The bull is back at Bloomingdale High School. Deputies recovered the 400-pound bronze bovine statue about 7 p.m. Wednesday after receiving a call from a tipster, Hillsborough County sheriff's spokesman J.D. Callaway said. The life-sized mascot was found at a storage facility at 1922 59th St. N. in Tampa, about 12 miles from the Valrico school. The statue was tucked deep into the property. "Somebody obviously was trying to hide it," Callaway said.The bull showed no signs of damage and was returned to the school Wednesday, he said. The investigation is ongoing. Valued at $8,000, the mascot was reported stolen this week. Thieves managed to dislodge the bronze bull from its concrete base Monday night or Tuesday morning, sheriff's deputies said. It was no easy task. The bull was anchored to concrete with bolts. Former head football coach Corey Brinson said it was a shock that someone rustled the bull from the front of the school. Brinson had been coach at the school for five years before stepping down last year. "I didn't even know something happened to the bull," he said this afternoon. He said he thinks the bull had been in place for about three years. Jason Stokes is the first-year head football coach, taking over this year for Brinson. This afternoon, he said that when he left practice around noon on Monday, the bull was still there. He said the bull was in the back of the school near the bus ramp and a parking lot area. Anyone with information should call the sheriff's office at (813) 247-8240 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-8477.