Siberian husky stolen outside Kroger has been recovered
Bloomfield Township — Kodi — No. 1 on the FBI (Fido Bureau of Investigations) most wanted list — has been returned to his owner.
Police reported the 10-month-old gray and white Siberian Husky had been stolen around 7 p.m. Monday while his owner was shopping in a Kroger store in the 4100 block of Telegraph in an area just south of Long Lake Road.
Kodi’s owner, Kevin Barnett, said the pup was tethered outside for about 20 minutes when the pooch was snatched.
According to witnesses, the doggie was taken by a 20-something white male driving a Jeep Cherokee.
That’s when Barnett turned to social media to help locate the missing pup.
“I put up a Facebook post with a photo and a story about what happened,” said Barnett, who is pre-med junior at Michigan State University. “I also put warnings on Craigslist all over the state telling people that any ad for a Siberian Husky might involve a stolen dog.”
On Monday night, Barnett had about 100 shares on Facebook. By Wednesday morning, it had grown to more than 10,000 shares.
“I was receiving messages from dog lovers telling me to hang in there, that they were praying for me and Kodi,” Barnett said. “People I didn’t know at all. I even received a message from a guy in Pennsylvania.”
Then late Tuesday, Barnett received an anonymous tip about Kodi’s location.
“We had offered a $1,000 reward but this person turned it down,” Barnett said. “They just wanted dog the home safe and sound. We passed the tip on to the police, and they obtained a search warrant.”
Kodi was located in a trailer park in Clarkston, hungry but otherwise healthy.
“The son’s investigation led everything off,” said Sgt. James Gallagher of the Bloomfield Township Police Department. “We were able to put together where the person was and went to that home. We could see the dog through the window. They cooperated and let us in, and Kodi came home.”
Gallagher said police hope to present their case to the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday.
“He was still wearing his leash,” Barnett said. “The guy who took him was taken into custody, and the Bloomfield Township police, who have been incredibly helpful, are working with the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office to determine what he should be charged with.”
According to Barnett, walking the family dog to Kroger is an old tradition in his family.
“Before Kodi, we had another Husky named Scout,” he said. “He loved lettuce, so every day, my dad would walk him to the Kroger store and buy him his head of lettuce. The two of them did that for 11 years before Scout died.”
According to Barnette, everyone at the Kroger store knew the dog walking routine and weren’t too surprised when Chris Barnett, Kevin’s father, began walking Kodi to the store every day.
“Kodi doesn’t eat lettuce, so my dad would just buy something small for himself, like a juice,” said Barnett, who was tied up with finals when Kodi was taken. “And Kodi would be tied up near a window, so it’s not like he was abandoned. At about 9:30 p.m. Monday, my mom called to say that Kodi was stolen. She was crying.”
Barnett’s father has determined that he’s going to continue his twice a day walks with Kodi to Kroger.
“But for sure, he’s not going to tie him up and then go inside the store,” Barnett said. “He’s just going to walk him for the exercise.”