Police have reunited a 13-year-old girl with her missing pet dog – more than a year after she was reported stolen.
Officers received a report on June 27 last year that Coco, a chihuahua/Jack Russell mixed breed, had been stolen from her home with the Gray family on the Ormeau Road in Belfast.
Sergeant Matt Boucher said: “Coco’s disappearance had a devastating impact on its family and our inquiries have been ongoing since her disappearance to try and find her.
“Unfortunately, despite a number of sightings of Coco in the days after she disappeared, she was never located.
“This morning officers carried out a search of a property in the north Belfast area and Coco was located and seized from the address.
“A 36-year-old male was subsequently cautioned on suspicion of handling stolen goods and our inquiries remain ongoing.”
Mr Boucher said after a trip to the vet to confirm Coco was well and her microchip details were correct, officers were delighted to be able to return her to her rightful owners.
“This was an intelligence-led search which led to the discovery of Coco at this address,” he said.
“It was a great feeling to see the Gray family’s reaction when we arrived unannounced at their front door with Coco in our arms.
“She certainly knew she was home as she barked loudly when we arrived outside the address.
“Coco’s return home was also a fantastic late birthday surprise for her owner Chelsea, who celebrated her 13th birthday on Wednesday.
“Our inquiries into the theft of Coco are ongoing but in the meantime we are delighted that we have been able to reunite her with her rightful owners.”
Anyone with any information about the theft of Coco is asked to contact police at Lisburn Road on 101, quoting reference number 2481 of 27/06/21.