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Saturday, Jun 22, 2002County: Island
Suspect(s) Unknown - We need your help!
"It's not knowing what happened to her that is very difficult for our family," said Clinton resident Terri Cerda.
Cerda was talking about the family's dog, Sarah, which was apparently stolen from the Clinton ferry dock sometime between June 22 and June 23, 2002.
Cerda is convinced her dog was taken by someone with connections to Whidbey Island.
"Someone on Whidbey knows the couple who took our dog, or knows where Sarah is," she said. "I am convinced they were visiting someone on the island and may return again this summer. We just want our dog returned, no questions asked."
Washington State ferry personnel knew the dog and where she lived, even Island Transit drivers knew she belonged to the Columbia Beach residents.
The 82-pound, now-12-year-old dog, was a regular visitor, walking to the dock with area residents.
The German shepherd mix is described by her owners as looking "like a scraggly coyote with her long fur shaved during the summer months." A series of events last June ended with the dog being taken off Whidbey Island.
Cerda gave birth to the couple's second daughter a few days before the dog was taken.
"It was a month of joy for our family when we welcomed our beautiful daughter into our family, and we were a little distracted, too," Cerda said.
Cerda described the day their dog disappeared.
A neighbor took Sarah on an evening stroll to the Clinton ferry dock. The dock area was in a state of turmoil as a fight had occurred and an Island County sheriff's deputy had responded. With attention diverted, Sarah wandered the dock area greeting travelers. A young couple visiting the island took a purse strap and placed it on Sarah, according to Cerca.
Cerda interviewed ferry personnel later and discovered the couple approached the ticket attendant and were advised that Sarah lived in the area and they should "let her go."
They also approached the deputy who, Cerda said, told them the dog lived in the area and would find its way home.The deputy watched as they made a call from the pay phone and he assumed they were calling animal control to report their find, Cerda said.
Instead, according to Cerda, several people saw them walk onto the ferry with Sarah and "we have ever seen her again."
The dog has a medical condition called hypothyroidism and will become very ill without medication.
Cerda rescued Sarah, who had been in and out of seven animal shelters due to the medical condition, when she was 3 years old. Cerda said she is not certain Sarah can survive without medication.
Anyone who has information about the dog can call 341-3012 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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