A visitor to a cash machine outside a bank in California was surprised one morning to see intruders inside the building before it had opened for the day. The two raccoons had managed to break in after crawling through the building’s air ducts, à la Feathers McGraw. Unfortunately, the ceiling tiles beneath them gave way and the two fluffy bandits found themselves inside a bank.
The Peninsula Humane Society and Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PHS/SPCA) responded to the call and arrived to receive the juvenile raccoons, who were busy making themselves comfortable in the bank in Redwood City, California.
“It’s not every day an animal organization gets called to deal with a bank break-in, but since the bank robbers were masked bandits of the wildlife kind, we were indeed the appropriate responders,” said PHS/SPCA’s Communications Manager Buffy Martin Tarbox in an email to IFLScience. “The bank managers let our rescue staff into the bank, and after about ten minutes of chasing the raccoons around the bank, we were finally able to safely shoo them outside. They apparently didn’t want to leave the bank.”
The concerned citizen who raised the alarm had first thought he was looking at a stuffed toy that had been left inside the bank by a member of staff. The raccoons, however, soon revealed that they were very much alive and at large, getting friendly with the bank’s mouse mats and telephones as they presumably tried to work out where on Earth they were.
“There were muddy pawprints on a tree outside the bank, so we suspect the raccoons climbed the tree to the roof of the bank, and then somehow managed to crawl into the air ducts and fell through the ceiling tiles onto the floor of the bank,” said Tarbox. “There were several broken ceiling tiles, and the masked bandits knocked papers around and even a computer over. Thankfully the raccoons were not injured during their morning escapade, and to our knowledge they didn’t abscond with any money.”
The masked bandits join a diverse hall of fame for animal break-ins, with some being less innocent than others. A home invasion by a bear featured an impromptu piano performance, while this story of a cougar breaking into a zoo had a less favorable ending. Perhaps most harrowing of all, however, has to be what these cats did when they broke into a human body farm. Suddenly robbing a bank seems a bit small time.