Yorkie stolen from Lemont front lawn in broad daylight

LEMONT, Ill. (WLS) -- A beloved 10-year-old Yorkie named Coca was stolen last week in broad daylight from the front yard of a home in south suburban Lemont.

It happened just as the Calero family was preparing to depart for the airport to celebrate a loved one's graduation from West Point military academy.

A neighbor's surveillance camera captured the dog-napping on Thursday from manicured residential street.

The video shows a car driving up and circling the cul-de-sac to scope out the place. The passenger-side door opens and someone runs into the driveway to grab Coca from the front yard. With dog in hand, they jump back into the car and speed off.

"As a family, our biggest fear is that that's going to lead to some kind of abuse," said Eli Calero Jr., son of the dog owners. "We're just worried about her. We all love her very much."

For almost a decade, little Coca has been like another child in the Calero family.

"We brought her home and, sorry," Calero said as he choked back tears. "We brought her home and she just became such a big part of the family."

"She's like our daughter," his dad Eli Calero Sr. said.

Now, bewildered, they're asking who could have taken the dog right from under their noses just hours before a family vacation.

"We're on a family trip celebrating the fact that my brothers have graduated. It's probably one of the last family trips we are going to take and it's constantly in our minds," Calero Jr. said.

Neighbor Sofea Malamis lives next door to where Coca was snatched. She said the entire neighborhood is on edge.

"You're afraid that something like this could happen at any time to the kids. Somebody just pull right up and snatch your kid," Malamis said.

But more than anything, the Caleros want Coca home safe.

"Please bring her back," Calero Jr. said. "We're not looking to get anyone in trouble. We love the dog, we care for her, she's a part of the family. Please, please, please, bring her back."

Lemont police say they believe this was a random crime, and they are investigating.
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.