A man is facing charges after stealing a dog from a Toronto animal shelter. 31-year-old Christopher Rich was arrested by police in the Durham Region on Sunday, Aug. 11 after a witness reported seeing him with the animal in Pickering. The dog theft, Toronto police confirm, has resulted in multiple charges laid against the suspect.
Rich is accused of a stealing a 10-month-old yellow lab named Milo from the Toronto Humane Society. According to CP24, the accused went into the shelter on three separate occasions demanding “that he be given a dog for free.” He was turned away each time.
Police reported that at around 11:30 a.m. on Friday, Rich visited the shelter for the fourth time. It was during this visit that he walked into the kennel, leashed Milo and walked out the front door with him.
The shelter quickly alerted police who shared images of the dog in a news release. Police received a call shortly before 2:00 p.m. on Sunday that Rich had been spotted near Glenanna and Kingston Road. It is uncertain when police made the arrest. However, it was reported by a representative of the shelter that Milo was returned safely to the Toronto Humane Society on Sunday around 4:00 p.m.
The shelter later shared their gratitude for the dog's safe return in a Facebook post.
“We want to thank each and everyone of you who shared our post, called in with tips or even spoke to your friends! We also want to thank Toronto and Durham Region Police and the Media outlets who covered this story for helping us find Milo,” the post read.
Rich has been charged with theft under $5000, failure to comply with probation and possession of property obtained by crime. According to National Pardons, despite the fact that the stolen goods amounted to less than $5000, there is still a chance the accused could face jail time, up to a maximum of two years.