TORONTO – New York had its Pizza Rat, but now Toronto has its own very Canadian version.
In a video that’s blowing up on YouTube, onlookers watch in giddy amazement as a raccoon descends from a coffee-shop ceiling and steals a donut.
Toronto resident Peter Jensen captured the video on Tuesday as a fierce winter storm battered the GTA.
“I see one of the ceiling tiles is flapping around … and one of the guys in the coffee shop is pointing at it and laughing and I’m thinking, ‘that’s a weird thing to laugh at, it’s just blowing around in the wind … but I look up and there‘s a little face staring back at me,” he told Global News.
The shy shoplifter took almost 30 minutes to work up the courage to complete the theft, Jensen said.
“He kept reaching down and would pop back inside, only make it halfway because people scared him.”
Jensen said the store manager tried to deter the aspiring thief with a broom but eventually gave up after they city’s Animal Services said it couldn’t respond until the next day. After that staff kept their distance and the raccoon exploited the opening.
The critter carefully lowering himself onto the donut racks while an audience cheers him on.
“He’s doing it! He’s doing it!” one cries. “This is incredible.”
The raccoon then climbs back through the ceiling with his pilfered pastry – an orange cruller — and disappears.
Staff members told Jensen that the raccoon returned later that night and stole another of the same flavour.
Jensen said the incident won’t affect his loyalty to the coffee shop, which he declined to identify.
The video is titled Sly Cooper and the Thievious Donutus, a reference to the video game Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus, about a young raccoon descended from a line of master thieves.