Halton regional police are asking the public for assistance in what they call a disturbing incident of a dog being stolen in broad daylight.
Idah Clementino, 14, was walking her Shih Tzu dog called Jackson across an Esso parking lot in Burlington on Monday night around 7 p.m., when she was approached from behind by a stranger.
“He pulled up right beside me right there, and he told me my dog was cute and that he wants to pet him,” she told CityNews.
When the girl, who was scared and unsure of what to do, tried to walk away the man persisted and began petting her dog.
He then removed the dog from the leash and told the girl, “I’ll take my dog. This is my dog. I lost him three years ago.”
The man then picked up the dog and walked back through the Esso parking lot before getting into a silver two-door sedan and driving away.
The family has put up a $250 reward for the dog’s safe return, the girl’s mother, Jane Clementino, said.
She hoped that either the dog will escape or someone will realize the suspect never owned such a dog and call police.
The suspect is described as a white male, approximately 40-50 years old standing 5’3″-5’8″. He was scruffy in appearance with a shaved head and unshaven face, wearing black shorts, a blue sweater and dark footwear.
The vehicle is described as a 2-door sports sedan, silver with a messy interior and silver spoiler on the trunk.
The dog is about three to four years old and light-tan in colour.
Anyone with information is being asked to contact Crime Stoppers or the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905-825-4747, extension 2315.