PROVO Provo police rescued a stolen 2-week-old puppy on Wednesday that they say hadn't been fed in four days because its alleged captor believed the dog could "take care of itself."
On Sept. 12, police say a man kicked the door open at his brother's home and stole his brother's 2-week-old purebred dachshund that was still in its mother's care.
The puppy is a rare fawn color and is valued at close to $4,500, according to a police affidavit filed in 4th District Court.
"This is kind of unusual," said Provo Police Lt. John Geyerman. "We don't get many stolen puppy capers. Usually if they try to steal them, they steal them when they're old enough to (sell)."
This puppy won't be ready to leave its mother for several more weeks.
The brother reported the puppy stolen last Friday, but he didn't suspect his 48-year-old brother, said Provo Police Lt. John Geyerman. However, the victim learned through friends his brother had the puppy and called police to report it.
Police went to the man's house, knocked on the door and confirmed his identity, Geyerman said.
"(Then they said) 'We hear you got a new puppy,' and he said, 'Yeah, come in and take a look,'" Geyerman said.
The officers confirmed the tiny puppy was the same stolen one and arrested the man, Geyerman said.
When police discovered the stolen puppy at the man's house, the man allegedly told them the animal hadn't eaten in four days because "it does not need to, it is its own man and can take care of itself," according to the affidavit.
"Obviously he's not aware enough of what's going on to realize he should feed the dog," Geyerman said.
Police said the puppy was in poor shape and was in desperate need of food and water.After the man was arrested, he tried to kick police as they went to pick up the puppy, according to the affidavit. The puppy was returned to its owner, and Jeffery Reed Schramm was booked into the Utah County Jail for investigation of second-degree felony burglary and third-degree felonies of animal cruelty and assault by prisoner on $9,999 cash-only bail.