Petting zoo animals stolen from Groveland family-owned restaurant



LAKE COUNTY, Fla. - Patrons of a popular family-owned restaurant in Groveland are angry that thieves have stolen part of its charm.

In addition to the food, The Redwing Restaurant is also known for its farm on State Road 33.

In the middle of the night, somebody carted off more than a dozen animals.

So far, the sheriff's office said one person has confessed to taking a pig. But, nearly half of the animals in the large pens were taken.

The Redwing Restaurant first opened in 1948. 

"It serves a nice purpose.  It's one of the few things people can do absolutely free," said owner Patrick Borsey.

Six years ago, Borsey opened a little petting zoo with pigs, donkeys, turkeys and goats.

But Thursday, they noticed that 13 goats and a pair of pot-bellied pigs were missing.

"I hope they get returned.  It is sad that they would do that," said customer Kristyn Fultz.

A tip led the sheriff's office to a photo on Facebook showing a local girl with one of the stolen pigs.  The deputy got it back, but the rest of the animals haven't turned up and no one has been arrested.  

Borsey is offering a reward for their safe return.  He hopes this was just a teenage prank.

"I think they're probably somewhere close.  To move 13 goats in the middle of the night, I doubt they would travel a very far distance," said Borsey.

Dorsey hopes whoever took the goats will just bring them back.