Stolen nearly two weeks ago, the 100-pound mascot reappeared overnight at Wilshire Park Elementary.
A wooden panda carving has been returned under cover of darkness to the St. Anthony grade school where it was stolen nearly two weeks ago, authorities said Friday.
"Sometime overnight it was brought back" to Wilshire Park Elementary School, 3600 Highcrest Road, said Police Capt. Dominic Cotroneo. "It was found returned in the same area from where it was stolen."
The 5-foot-tall mascot's base was slightly damaged from where it had been bolted into the concrete, but the smiling and waving figure came away otherwise unscathed.
Cotroneo said police are hopeful that there is surveillance video images that show the 100-pound panda being returned.
Whoever stole the artwork could face a felony charge. It's possible that the value of the panda, combined with the cost of repairing its base and the concrete, could top the $1,000 amount that the law requires for the case to be considered a felony.