SUMMERVILLE -- A bronze, life-size sculpture of a hippopotamus at Shepard Park was vandalized Saturday and the group that donated the sculpture is asking the public for help in finding those responsible.

The sculpture, "Free Ride" by artist Paul Rhymer, depicts a partially submerged hippo with a bird perched on its back. A resident called police Saturday and reported the bird was missing from the sculpture after a number of young people were standing on it.

The installation of the hippo in the pond also may need to be repaired, said Janet Meyer, executive director of Sculpture in the South, the organization that donated the sculpture to the town in 2008. Repairs are expected to exceed $2,500, Meyer said.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call Summerville police at 871-2463.