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'David Beckham' found safe after abduction from Florida zoo

Box turtle named after soccer star was stolen from Sante Fe College in May

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. – David Beckham is back home after his abduction from a Gainesville zoo.

No, not that David Beckham, but rather a box turtle named after the British soccer star. The turtle was among 11 animals stolen from the Sante Fe College Teaching Zoo in May.

The turtle was recently found by two motorists, who contacted the zoo after moving the turtle out of the way of traffic in northwest Gainesville, according to a college spokesperson.

Spokesperson Jay Anderson said eight of the animals, including Beckham, have been recovered since the May 29 burglary. A box turtle and two gopher tortoises are still missing.

Three individuals, including a Sante Fe student, have been arrested in the case. They face charges ranging from burglary to attempting to deal in stolen merchandise.

The search continues for the missing animals. Anyone with tips on their whereabouts is asked to call the Sante Fe College Police Department at (352) 395-5519.

But if nothing else, Beckham's recovery is a cause for shell-ebration.

About the Author:

A Florida transplant with Midwest roots, Garrett Pelican is the digital executive producer for News4Jax.