Adverts: 0161 709 4576 - Editorial: 0161 709 4571
Mail Order: 0161 709 4578 - Subs: 0161 709 4575 - Webteam: 0161 709 4567

Dog found dead after knifepoint snatch

OVER 150 dogs have been destroyed in the city of Aurora, Colorado since the city council’s breed specific ban on ‘pit bull type’ dogs started in February. A CLUMBER Spaniel stolen from its owner during a terrifying knifepoint attack was later found dead.

‘Rosie’ was being walked by her owner, David Smith at around 9.30pm on the evening of Wednesday, April 12th in Marshbrook Way in Telford, Shropshire, when they were approached by two men. One man used a craft knife to threaten Mr Smith then a second robber pulled him to the ground before they ran off with Rosie.

The dog's body was discovered on Thursday night in a brook not far away from where the theft happened. West Mercia Police are treating the matter as a serious offence.

The man with the knife is described as, white, aged in his 20s, 5ft 9in tall of medium build and wearing dark clothing including a ‘hoodie’.

He was wearing light coloured trainers and had what sounded like a ‘local’ accent; police say his accomplice may have had a northern accent.

Rosie’s owners Sue and David Smith said they believe the robbers deliberately targeted their pet.
"We just cannot believe anyone would do this. It seems that Rosie was the target. She cost £800 when we bought her," said 36-year-old Mrs Smith.

"One of the men shouted ‘leave him, get the dog’ as they were attacking David. "He thinks he may have fallen onto Rosie as he was forced to the ground. Maybe she was injured and was no longer any good to them."

Messages of sympathy have flooded in from all over the world to the couple after the news of Rosie’s theft and death appeared on the Internet.

A reward fund set up to help trace the two men involved in the kidnap of Rosie has now reached £3,500.

Mr and Mrs Smith said they were "overwhelmed" at the international response to Rosie’s death, having received messages from Australia, Canada, the USA and all over the UK.

The story has touched the hearts of dog-lovers all over the world, including Wrekin MP Mark Pritchard, himself a dog lover who has personally offered £500 to the fund. Telford entertainer Bobby Ray offered another £500.

Mr Smith said: "We’ve had more than 50 e-mail messages of sympathy from all over the world. My wife spent three hours yesterday replying to all of them. We are really touched by everyone’s kind support and the police have been absolutely fantastic."

l OUR DOGS reporter Heather Harley received the following message from Mr and Mrs Smith:
‘Thank you to all who have expressed their sadness and passed on well wishes to us. We cannot find the words to explain how sad we feel. Rosie was lovely and sweet natured and loved people, we will miss her so much. There has been a lot of publicity and support in the Shropshire area about the attack on Dave and the death of Rosie, our local MP has offered a reward to catch the evil men who took her.

‘As you can imagine we are very shocked and upset but everyone's support is keeping us strong. We have another clumber called 'Jasper' who is missing Rosie.’

l Anyone with information can contact Telford CID on 08457 444 888 or the confidential Crimestoppers line 0800 555 111.