PORTLAND — Portland police are trying to find out who took a hand-carved Welcome to Portland sign worth $3,500 that was removed from the intersection of West Commercial Street and Fore River Parkway.

The sign was carved from a single piece of wood and was handpainted with gold leaf.

City workers first noticed the sign missing at the beginning of December, but did not immediately report it because they were trying to determine if someone in the city knew about it. The two posts that held the sign were splintered like it was broken off, though later, the posts had been cut smooth.

The sign is 5 feet by 8 feet and weighs 100 pounds.

Police ask that anyone with information call 874-8533 or go to the department’s website at www.portland-police.com