Dog stolen while inside car found safe in another state, family says

Tess, a Goldendoodle, was reportedly found walking along a highway with the man who stole her.
Published: Feb. 15, 2023 at 3:57 PM CST
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NASHVILLE (WSMV/Gray News) -The owners of a dog who was stolen while inside their car said she was found safe in another state.

Casey Miles told WSMV that her white 2007 Lincoln Navigator was stolen out of Mansfield, Illinois, on Feb. 8 with Tess, a goldendoodle, still inside.

Nashville police said they recovered the SUV in Nashville a day later, but without the suspect or Tess. The vehicle had reportedly crashed into a light pole and was found abandoned.

Miles said the car was stolen while her mother was volunteering at their local American Legion. Miles said her mother went back inside to clean up and left Tess in the vehicle, which was running and unlocked. While inside, someone ran inside to report that the car and Tess had been stolen.

Miles said her mother’s phone and purse were also inside the vehicle, but have since been recovered. The suspect had reportedly taken cash out of the purse and threw everything else out of the car’s window.

On Tuesday, Tess was found walking with the man who took her and the vehicle along an interstate near Greenville, Alabama, according to authorities, WSMV reported.

Miles said her father traveled from Illinois to Nashville to search for the dog. Her family is headed to Alabama Tuesday to pick up Tess, and she said she was told a man is in custody in connection to the theft.

Tess is being cared for by animal control until her family is able to pick her up.