CORRECTION: An arrest warrant released by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office on May 17, 2019 said the Buzzy animatronic was stolen in a separate incident from the theft of Buzzy’s clothes reported in August 2018. Full story here.
Records released by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office have cast doubt on rumors that a Disney animatronic was stolen from Epcot.
A Disney fan named DreamfinderGuy first claimed in a tweet on Saturday that Buzzy, the animatronic host of Epcot’s shuttered Cranium Command attraction, had been stolen sometime in November, allegedly leaving a mess of hydraulic fluid behind. This account soon spread on social media under #FindBuzzy, while other Twitter accounts and WDW News Today proclaimed the theft had been “confirmed.”
The official incident report provided to Orlando Rising doesn’t fit with that story. It states sometime between August 1 and 8, someone entered the backstage area of the former Wonders of Life pavilion and removed clothing from the Buzzy animatronic, not the full figure.
“The items taken are a green military style cap, a red bomber jacket, and a pair of custom-made rubber hands,” the report said. “The items are a part of Walt Disney World history and hold a value on the black market for collectors.”
Disney World did not give anyone permission to take the clothing. The report added that there are multiple ways in and out of Cranium Command and the building itself is “constantly being utilized” by outside vendors and contractors. Despite its attractions having closed in 2007, the Wonders of Life pavilion is typically used for Epcot events like the Food & Wine Festival.
The other document released by the sheriff’s office regards a suspect in the theft. According to this report, the 24-year-old suspect appeared voluntarily for questioning on December 19, placed his phone on the table, then quickly stated he was leaving.
“I told him we were keeping the phone,” officer David Foro, Jr. wrote in the report. “Once I said this he grabbed the phone from the table and brought it to his waist area. The defendant was secured and the phone was recovered. He was then detained pending additional search warrants to his residence as well as the phone.”
The suspect was charged with resisting an officer without violence, a misdemeanor offense. The report went on to say the suspect said “he felt sick and felt he was going to vomit,” claimed he couldn’t breathe, requested water and was allowed to lay on the floor. While his vital signs were found to be normal, he was transported to Dr. Phillips Hospital in Orlando and then to the Orange County Booking and Release Center.
Disney has yet to comment on the theft of Buzzy’s clothes. The sheriff’s office said there has been no arrest in the case.
“This is all we have right now in the way of public records,” said Jane Watrel, public information officer for the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. “The investigation remains active and open. There will be no further information released at this time.”
When asked if the police reports mean his initial, widely-sourced tweets about the alleged theft were inaccurate, Twitter user @DreamfinderGuy said “just relayed what I heard” from another Twitter user named @BackdoorDisney, who has gained infamy in recent months for releasing photos taken in off-limits areas around Disney World.
“I’m slowly starting to doubt this whole situation,” he tweeted. “Nothing here seems to be adding up anymore.”
Despite the information released by the sheriff’s office, WDW News Today said on Twitter it stands by its report that the full animatronic was stolen.
“Disney has confirmed the theft to news sources that have asked,” the site’s official account tweeted.
Photo credit: Provided to Orlando Rising