NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A family on Long Island is hoping that Santa will bring them something they’ve been wanting for two months — the return of their stolen dog.
Donna Labriola told CBS 2′s John Slattery the last two months have been hell for her and her three daughters.
“All they ache for is Joey. They’re missing a family member,” said Labriola.
Joey, the purloined pooch, is a Maltese-Dachshund mix. Labriola’s youngest daughter, 10 year-old Maria, wants the dog back so badly, she’s asked Santa for him.
“The very first thing on her list, in big bold letters is, “I want my JoJo back.” That was her first thing,” said Labriola.
Joey was taken during a burglary on Tuesday, October 23, between 8:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., police said. Thieves forced open a basement door and broke a waterpipe under a vanity — flooding the The West Islip house.
They stole cash, jewelry and a beloved family pet, police said.
“They ended up taking … I had $1,200 in cash in my room and all my jewelry,” Labriola said.
The estimated value of the jewelry is $15,000.
The thieves didn’t take the family’s other dog, an Australian Shepherd, that was in a crate. But it’s believed they did take Joey.
“I think they saw him as a sweet little friendly thing, and decided to take him — whether to hurt me — or to give to somebody or to themself,” Labriola said.
The family has posted flyers outside and notices on Craigslist.
“This dog is gonna come home. He’s got to come home. I can’t believe he’s not with us anymore.”
It’s a heartbreaking loss for a 10-year-old girl, and peculiar for a dog to be stolen during a residential burglary, Slattery reported.
Joey is 13 pounds and tan, cream-colored with black/gray on his ears and on the tip of his tail.
Suffolk County Crime Stoppers offers a cash reward of up to $5,000.00 for information that leads to an arrest.
Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.
All calls will be kept confidential.