NEW PORT RICHEY — "If anyone has seen the dinosaur, please call the New Port Richey police department” is a statement you don’t see often. But police have issued a BOLO (be on the lookout) for an 8-foot-long baby velociraptor that vanished around Halloween from the Harry Schwettman Education Center on Grand and Gulf avenues.

The disappearing dinosaur is actually one of several animatronic creatures belonging to the the Museum of Archeology, Paleontology and Science, a New Port Richey educational institution. It and a few other replica extinct reptiles were strapped in place outside the center in preparation for its interactive “Dino & Dragons” exhibit set to open Dec. 9.

Nov. 1 was to be the first day of construction of the exhibit, but when museum curator Charles Sidar arrived at the venue the baby dino had flown the coop.

The dinosaur is valued at $6,000, according to a statement put out by the museum, making its theft a felony. The museum also speculated it might just be a Halloween prank gone awry, in which case they would very much appreciate the dino’s return.

So, if anyone has seen the dinosaur, please call the New Port Richey police department.