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2 people break into animal shelter to steal 3 impounded dogs

By Darleene Powells

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    JURUPA VALLEY, California (KCAL, KCBS) — Two people broke into the Jurupa Valley Shelter to steal three dogs that had been impounded over the weekend, the second such theft in less than four months.

Riverside County sheriff’s deputies were called to the Jurupa Valley shelter Sunday morning when employees discovered the missing dogs and broken locks. Surveillance video of the theft showed two suspects in the building at about 2:30 a.m. and leaving with the dogs off leash toward a back area of the campus.

“All three of them are very distinct. If they’re together, it’s kind of like its gonna be a shout-out that, ‘oh, these are the three missing dogs,” said John Welsh, spokesman for Riverside County Animal Services.

The three dogs had been impounded on Friday after a dog bite was reported in Jurupa Valley, according to Riverside County Animal Services officials. It was not clear to the animal services officer which dog was involved in the biting incident, since one was found roaming off leash and the two others were tethered to a fence near an RV, and their owner was not present. Because they did not have food and water, all three dogs were impounded.

State law requires an investigation and a 10-day quarantine after a report of an animal biting a person, so two of the dogs had been kenneled together at the Western Riverside County/City Animal Shelter at 6851 Van Buren Blvd. The third dog was kenneled alone in a different building, officials said.

Animal Services say the dogs are believed to have been stolen by the presumed owner and an accomplice, possibly a woman. An officer returned to the location where the dogs were found, but the RV that was there when the dogs were impounded was no longer there.

Sunday’s theft was not even the first time an owner broke in to steal his dog back — a similar break-in happened on Jan. 28.

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