UPDATE: Beverly Police Department Juvenile, School Resource Officer Edward Hathon said in an email "after a brief investigation and with the assistance of Beverly High School staff it was determined to be a class prank. The Salem HS students involved were identified and returned the panther home unscathed within an hour of it being taken. No criminal charges will be sought against the few Salem HS students involved."
Salem police were on the look out Sunday afternoon for a carload of kids wearing Salem High School gear after Beverly High School's beloved 6-foot panther statue went missing.
At about 3:30 p.m., police learned that a vehicle carrying what appeared to be Salem high school students had just made off with the Beverly High School panther.
So, we have to ask - is the theft of a local high school's mascot just a harmless high school prank?