It was supposed to be a nice outing for this couple; however, the event suddenly took a dramatic turn when their truck was carjacked. They became worried sick as their beloved dog was inside the stolen vehicle.
On Oct. 21, Carolyn Hamilton and her husband, Jeff, of Truckee, California, were preparing to leave for an outing in the nearby Sierra Valley. They got their car engine started and placed their beloved 6-year-old family dog, Albus, in the front seat.
Before leaving, the couple went back into their house to bid goodbye to the others inside. When they returned a moment later, the truck—with the dog inside—was gone.
“We just put him in the truck in our driveway, came back in to say goodbye, and literally turned around and the truck was gone,” Carolyn told FOX 40.
They called the police immediately.
According to Truckee police, surveillance footage captured near the Hamilton’s home shows two men stealing from other vehicles shortly before reaching their truck. Apparently, the men stole the Hamilton’s Dodge Ram pickup after the couple walked away briefly.
The police soon found the truck and attempted to corner the thieves in a parking lot, but they ended up escaping.
Subsequently, the thieves headed east on Interstate 80 and led Truckee Police and California Highway Patrol on a high-speed chase that ended in southeast Reno, near South McCarran and Rio Poco. For the safety of the public, the officers had to call off the chase when the suspect began driving on sidewalks and running red lights.
Ever since, Albus went missing with the car. The Hamiltons put up fliers and posted missing-dog notices in the hope of finding Albus. Many volunteers also joined them in their search.
Carolyn wasn’t concerned about losing her truck; instead, she was worried about Albus, whom they adopted from a roadside box six years ago.
“At this point I just care about the little innocent being that was in the front seat or the back seat and was snatched away from his safe place because I didn’t protect him,” Carolyn told KOLO-TV.
Finally, on Oct. 24, Carolyn received a call from the police at around 7:45 p.m. Detective Lisa Madden and Sgt. Danny Renfrow of the Truckee Police Department had found the truck abandoned in a southeast Reno neighborhood.
“There was some hope in it, and some urgency,” Carolyn mentioned. “And I think that’s a magical equation.”
Fortunately, Albus was safe inside. Though Albus was trapped in the closed vehicle for three days, he was healthy despite being weak and dehydrated. The poor pooch was sent to the vet that night to be treated for dehydration.
Carolyn said the harrowing incident was very eye-opening for her family. Through the ordeal, they started thinking about the people who lost their loved ones and pets during the recent California wildfires.
“We tried to always compare our grief to the larger grief,” Carolyn said. “And I think what happened is that we were able to just be a little more compassionate for people who experience loss.”
Fortunately, Albus, affectionately named after Albus Dumbledore, was later released from the vet and arrived safely back home. He even received a visit from the local police, who made a point of checking up on the little pooch after his shocking ordeal.
“They had a tenderness about them that you don’t attach to police officers,” Carolyn said. “But we should from now on.”
Whilst there was a time when people could leave their front doors unlocked, unfortunately society’s overall situation has changed, and that’s not so possible anymore. So, we all need to be cautious of this issue.
Photo credit: Video Screenshot | Kolotv.