A famous Lorax statue stolen from the home of late author Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel last year was found buried in thick brush off a canyon in San Diego Wednesday, police confirmed.
The San Diego Police Department says the Lorax statue – a 300-pound, 2-foot-tall bronze statue stolen from Dr. Seuss’ La Jolla home in March 2012 – was recovered by detectives in a canyon in the 7500 block of Country Club Drive in La Jolla.
Detectives searched the canyon Wednesday morning after receiving a tip from a man in Montana claiming to know about the theft of the statue and where it was stashed.
According to police, the unidentified 22-year-old tipster came forward to authorities at the Bozeman Police Department in Montana last week, saying he had information about the crime committed in San Diego. His details then led police to find the Lorax statue, officials said.
The tipster’s name was not released. The investigation is ongoing and charges are pending.
At this point, police have not released details about how the statue was stolen or who stole it.
Police say the Lorax statue – valued at approximately $10,000 – has now been returned to its home at the Geisel estate.
The statue is one of only two in the world created by Dr. Seuss’ stepdaughter, Lark Dimond-Cates, and was priceless to the family.
Dimond-Cates sculpted the statue for her stepfather’s memorial. Dr. Seuss’ widow, Audrey Geisel, loved it so much so asked her daughter for a copy of the bronze artwork for their Mt. Soledad home.
Last March, Audrey Geisel called police when she discovered the statue was missing from her home.
Dimond-Cates spoke to NBC 7 San Diego at the time of the crime and said she was upset about the theft.
"It's crummy to sneak into a 90-year-old widow's home in the dead of night and steal her Lorax," Dimond-Cates told NBC 7 last March. "You can't be doing that."
"It gave her so much happiness to get up every morning and look out and see her little Lorax out there," Dimond-Cates said. "And she got up the other day and he wasn't there."
At the time of the theft, the Geisel estate was in the process of installing security cameras, so the act was not captured on tape.
The home’s manager, Carl Romero, told NBC 7 last March that thieves likely dragged the statue from the home, down a hill, over a fence and possibly into a car.
“The Lorax” was published as a book in 1971. The story follows a young boy through a pristine pollution-free world. The boy encounters the Lorax – a small creature who "speaks for trees" on the importance of preserving the ecosystem.
The book was made into a 2012 film "The Lorax" distributed by Universal Pictures.