Police seek suspect who smuggled $2,500 exotic bird out under his shirt

The owners of an exotic bird store in Burlington County say that a man stole a $2,500 bird by sticking it under his shirt and walking out of the shop.

News 12 Staff

Aug 11, 2021, 9:52 AM

Updated 986 days ago

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The owners of an exotic bird store in Burlington County say that a man stole a $2,500 bird by sticking it under his shirt and walking out of the shop. They are now pleading for the bird’s safe return.
“I don’t care. Just return the bird,” says Zina Singer, an employee at Bird Paradise in the city of Burlington.
The theft of the lorikeet happened on Monday at the store on Route 130.
"On the camera, we do have him picking up the bird from this environment. He also walked over, had the bird in his hand, lifted his shirt up and put the bird under his shirt,” Singer says. “He was with another person that was outside distracting our employees. He walked right out the front door into his car."
Police are looking for a man and a woman caught on surveillance camera. They drove off in a green mid-1990s Nissan Altima with no hub caps.
"It's a unique color and a unique type of vehicle. We do believe because it had no front license plate it may be an out-of-state tag,” says Burlington Police Chief John Fine.
The owners of Bird Paradise say that they will take the bird back with no questions asked.
“We are more devastated about the bird disappearing and not being properly cared for,” says Singer. “It is not a regular bird. It’s a lorikeet, which needs nectar water 24/7 and other fruits and vegetables. It does not eat pellets. It does not eat seeds and does not eat any kind of nut.”
The staff is now on alert in case any other thefts occur.
“We have to be more mindful when we come in to make sure that if there’s anybody in here, somebody has to be in here with them,” says Singer.
Police say that because of the value of the bird, the suspects could be facing felony charges.
Anyone who has any information about the theft is asked to call Officer Mort Haney at 609-386-0262 or leave an anonymous tip on the department’s website


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