Hopefully she learned her lesson about strangers
Homeowners everywhere are going to be heavily vetting their housesitters after hearing about the theft of a beloved family member because the teen looking after their home let in two strange men.
An unidentified 18-year-old in Leonia, New Jersey called the police to tell them that there was a theft at the house that she was tasked with watching while the occupants were out of town. The young woman got bored while she was watching the house and family dog, so she started swiping through the dating app Tinder. She eventually landed on a man that she thought was intriguing and they matched. She asked the guy to come on over to the place where she was housesitting and keep her company.
He did end up coming over, but not because he was looking to hook up.
A Pet Stolen
The man she had never met before showed up, but he had another man with him. That should have been a major red flag to her, but she continued with the encounter. At some point, the girl was alone with the man she was originally talking to outside of the house, and the third wheel was alone inside the home. Eventually, both men left, and the housesitter realized that she was being distracted by one of the men while a crime took place.
The two men made their escape with a laptop, a package from Amazon, and the family’s two-year-old white Maltese named Maggie. The teen reported the theft on the night of Sunday, August 20, and the Leonia Police Department leapt into action trying to locate the stolen animal.
They posted pictures of the dog on their Facebook page and pleaded with the public to be on the lookout for her. They also gave out some tips for remaining safe while meeting strangers. “Do not share personal/financial information on social media. Meet in a public place when meeting for the first time. Tell family and friends when meeting someone new for the first time,” the officials wrote.
Spreading the Word
The next day (August 21), a woman named Elena Ramirez found a little white dog wandering around her neighborhood in Garfield, New Jersey about eight miles away from Leonia. Elena called the Garfield Police Department about the lost creature, and they handed the dog over to Lysa DeLaurentis of the All Humane Animal Rescue.
The animal rescue sent photos of the scared little dog to Samantha Palino who ran the “Bergen County NJ Lost and Found Pets” Facebook page. She posted the pictures in the hopes that someone would recognize adorable animal. It didn’t take long for the dog’s identity to be determined.