“My baby:” Mom, daughter desperate to find beloved French bulldog stolen during carjacking

ATLANTA — A woman is desperate for help after someone stole her SUV with her dog inside.

The SUV has been found, but the French bulldog is still missing.

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Channel 2′s Tom Regan was at the gas station in Buckhead on Wednesday where the accident happened last Thursday.

Regan has been reporting for months about the rise in dognapping cases across metro Atlanta. Some dogs have even been stolen from their own yards or while on walks with their owners.

Utheshiea Johnson said her 9-month-old pup, Reya, is much more than a pet.

“She is my baby. She sleeps with me every night,” Johnson said. “I took her everywhere with me.”

Now, she has some regrets about taking Reya along to the convenience store, where she ran inside to buy chips and a drink. Her Range Rover was still running, but she thought she’d locked the door.

While she was in the store, a blue van pulled up and a masked man jumped out, got into her car and took off with Reya inside.

Two days later, police found the stolen SUV at an apartment complex. It wasn’t damaged, but Reya was not in the vehicle.


“I know she’s scared. I know she doesn’t know what is going on. You know what I mean? So that’s the worst,” Johnson said.

When Johnson got Reya, she didn’t know that French bulldogs are a favorite and top-stolen dog breed in the country. Thieves can make thousands on stolen purebred dogs, especially small ones.

“I want to know what’s going on with her,” Johnson said. “I cry because I want to know she is safe.”

Johnson and her daughter spent part of the day handing out flyers in the neighborhood where the stolen car was abandoned. They hope to get Reya back home soon.

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Her daughter, Olivia Miller, said she doesn’t know how someone could take her dog.

“I don’t think they have a heart. It’s just really sad to me. I don’t know how anyone could do that,” Miller said.

Johnson is offering a reward for the return of her dog.