BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — While authorities managed to track down and bring home a dachshund taken from Botetourt County last week, the Botetourt County Sheriff’s Office says the person who took the dog is not facing criminal charges.
According to the sheriff’s office, a report came in at approximately 3:20 p.m. on Monday, June 29, about a dog running loose near the intersection of Brookfield Lane and Willowbrook in the 1000 block of Blue Ridge Boulevard.
The sheriff’s office says a witness reported the dog was taken by a man driving a white tractor-trailer with a sleeping cab. At the time, the man was believed to be the owner, but authorities soon discovered the dog — identified as a long-haired, female Dachshund named “Schatzi” — belonged to a nearby resident.
On Thursday, July 2, the sheriff’s office announced Schatzi was turned over to law enforcement in Kentucky and reunited with her owner in good condition.
Authorities say Virginia law requires anyone who finds a companion animal to notify the local public animal shelter and offer at least a name and contact information. If the animal is a dog, failing to take these actions can result in a felony grand larceny charge, according to the sheriff’s office.
However, officials reportedly consider multiple factors when deciding whether or not to file criminal charges.
“During the course of this investigation, it has been the primary goal of our office to have Schatzi safely returned to her owner. A number of factors played into accomplishing this goal to include the ultimate cooperation of the individual who picked Schatzi up,” the Botetourt County Sheriff’s Office wrote on Facebook Thursday. “Though some may agree or disagree, after conferring with the Commonwealth’s Attorney, it has been decided that no criminal charges will be placed at this time.”
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