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Posted: September 20, 2013 3:59 p.m.

Giant pet tortoise is found after escaping its pen

ARLTON, Ga. (AP) — A giant tortoise that went missing in northeast Georgia has been found after a motorist spotted the 50-pound animal crossing a road.

Miranda Mendenhall saw a logging truck swerve around something on Lexington Carlton Road on Thursday afternoon. She thought it was a bag of trash at first, she told The Athens Banner-Herald

"I was in shock. You don't usually see a turtle that big, so I called 911," she said.

Zip the tortoise had made it about a half-mile from its home in Carlton. Zip had forced its way out of a backyard fence Sept. 13, touching off a search.

The Madison County Sheriff's Office sent a deputy to the scene and he and Mendenhall waited the animal's owner arrived to get it.

Zip just sat quietly on the side of the road.

"I never saw it move once," Mendenhall said with a chuckle.

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