THOUSAND PALMS ( —A small marmoset monkey was rescued from a Thousand Palms home Friday evening during a narcotics bust.

Sheriff’s deputies discovered the monkey — a 2-year-old female named Penny — during an investigation at a house in the 31600 block of Christy Way at about 6:30 p.m. Friday.

Riverside County Animal Services impounded the monkey.

Two men were taken into custody after deputies located narcotics in the home.

Officer Gerald Duchene transported the monkey to the Coachella Valley Animal Campus in Thousand Palms. Later Friday night, a representative from a Fish & Wildlife-approved sanctuary in Apple Valley retrieved the monkey.

A woman who lives at the home signed the pet over to Animal Services. She said the monkey belonged to her boyfriend, one of the two men who was arrested.

It is illegal to own such a monkey without a special permit from the state department of Fish & Wildlife.

“She was very cute and she was very friendly,” said Lt. Luis Rosa of Riverside County Animal Services. “We all wanted to meet the monkey. She climbed on me as if we had known each other for a long time. We would have loved to keep her at the shelter to be our mascot. But she’s heading to a good place that specializes in specifically caring for such exotic pets.”

Officer Duchene said he has never impounded such an interesting animal.

“I will have to say it was a pretty strange and weird call,” Duchene said. “But it was also pretty awesome. She was so beautiful. Even though we only got to know her for a brief moment, we’ll miss her.”


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