Dog taken in Lincoln Park car theft caught on camera reunited with family thanks to good Samaritan

Karen Jordan Image
Tuesday, June 11, 2024
Dog taken in North Side car theft caught on video reunited with family
Precious the Pekingese visiting from the San Francisco, CA area with Pooja Chinnakotla's parents, only to go missing in a Lincoln Park car theft.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Precious the Pekingese is back in the arms of her family after going through quite an ordeal.

She had only been in Chicago a few days, visiting from the San Francisco Bay Area with Pooja Chinnakotla's parents, only to go missing when Chinnakotla's car was stolen.

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"I think I would have been less worried about, 'Oh, my car is gone.' But when you're dog is in our car, it's, 'Oh, my god, my dog is gone,'" Chinnakotla said.

Chinnakotla and her parents went to dinner at a Lincoln Park restaurant on Monday night. Precious was in the car with the windows down.

When they returned, the car was gone. Surveillance video shows someone breaking in and driving away.

"She's a very big homebody, so it was, 'Oh my god, where did they leave her?'" Chinnakotla said.

It turns out that precious was not far away. She was spotted near Wrightwood and Halsted.

That's where Anna Dawson and her son were walking their dog. She says her neighbor tried to keep Precious from darting into traffic.

"She was sweet, and when she'd finally warmed up, she let me pick her up and then carry her," Dawson said.

Dawson took to social media.

"I took a picture and I posted it online, and my story and community groups for the Lincoln Park area here," Dawson said.

Chinnakotla's family also went online for help.

"My boyfriend put out the APB for the dog, and somebody in the Lincoln Park Chicago Facebook group managed to see Anna's post and his at the same time," Chinnakotla said.

A connection was made, and on Tuesday morning, fewer than 12 hours after she went missing, there was a happy reunion.

"As soon as the dog saw the mom, it was just pure happiness. And she actually started crying, whimpers of excitement," Dawson said.

"I think we're just grateful for community and social media and people like Anna who are willing to help," Chinnakotla said.

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