Stolen gibbons recovered in Florida

Gibbons Caylee and Cody, owned by Nancy Stephens of
Doniphan, were reported missing Monday. The primates were
found in Florida Thursday.

DONIPHAN — Two missing Gibbon primates taken from a home here were recovered alive and well Thursday morning in Fort Myers, Fla.

The small, black-and-white primates were taken from Nancy Stephens' home sometime before dawn on Monday. Stephens has owned Caylee and Cody since they were babies.

She studies behavioral sciences, but the animals are also her pets. She told law enforcement the Gibbons are valued at $25,000 each.

According to a news release from the Hall County Sheriff's Office, Jacob Ruehlman, age 20, of Fort Myers and his twin brother, Michael Ruehlman, address unknown, were arrested in Florida and both are being charged with possession of stolen property.

Federal charges are pending as it is illegal to possess the Gibbons without proper licensure. Charges in Hall County are also pending.

The brothers were listed by Stephens as persons of interest, which led to the recovery of the primates.

The Lee County Sherriff's Office in Florida, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the public in general assisted Hall County authorities in recovering the Gibbons.

Stephens is making arrangements for their return.

To read more, see Friday's Hastings Tribune or the Tribune e-edition.>>>

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