“Our Deputies have seen their fair share of ‘monkey business’ in the County. But nothing quite like this.”
On August 13, cops were perplexed after receiving an unusual 911 call from a monkey. After losing contact, they looked into the source, discovering that the call came from a zoo where no staff admitted to being the caller – but a 10-month-old capuchin had supposedly stolen a cellphone.
“We’ve been informed Capuchin monkeys are quite inquisitive and will grab anything and anything and simply start pushing buttons,” stated the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office on Facebook in a post about Route, a capuchin named after a road trip.
“And that’s exactly what Route did… it just so happened to be the proper number combination to call us.”
Route’s small crime occurred on the zoo’s golf cart, which keepers use to navigate the 40-acre Zoo to You facility near Paso Robles. Route was riding with Zoo to You associate director Lisa Jackson when the juvenile capuchin seized the phone, which is not unusual for the monkey.
“She was a passenger in my cart, and we were driving along when she snatched the phone, “According to CBC, Jackson stated this in an interview with As It Happens guest host Susan Bonner.
“She’s always inquisitive, so I didn’t think much of it.” I took the phone, returned it, and she and I went about our business.”
Route’s antics highlight the intellect of these animals at an early age, with a face that screams “You got any games on your phone?” – and as far as monkey business goes, it’s not all that odd.
Long-tailed macaques in Bali have learnt not only to steal from humans, but also to barter. According to research, they were capable of predicting which products would fetch them the most trade when stolen from tourists on their home territory.
A shoe versus glasses or a hat against a phone are two examples, with the former reflecting the medium value and the latter representing the high value in both instances. Their findings revealed that older monkeys were better at recognizing and taking high-value goods like mobile phones, spectacles, and wallets. They were also more inclined to turn down low-ball offers in favor of higher-value trades.
Route’s phone call may have “wasted” police time (though we doubt any of the policemen would describe it that way), but she didn’t hold them hostage thereafter.