TACOMA, Wash. — Mike and Karen Rapponotti and their two daughters had just moved into their new home in Tacoma on Tuesday when someone kicked in the back door, stealing tablet computers and electronics.
But the thieves took something even more precious, the family's 7-year-old Chihuahua mix Sydney.
“The property can be replaced. I just want my dog back,” said Mike Rapponotti.
“The other things that were stolen, we don’t care about,” added his wife Karen. “But we can’t replace Sydney and the memories and what she’s meant to this family.”
Why someone would steal Sydney isn't clear.
The Rapponottis believe the thieves may have been a man and woman, since Karen's makeup was also stolen, and that they may have taken Sydney to keep as a pet.
Losing Sydney is especially hard in Mike.
The Marine veteran served three deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder-like symptoms.
Sydney would ride with him in his truck-driving job and help him stay calm in tense situations.
“I get hypersensitive because of what I did in the military,” said Rapponotti. “I can’t be around large groups of people, frustrating situations. For me, it was mostly someone to relax with at the end of the day.”
The Rapponottis say whoever the thieves are, they can keep everything they took, if they just return Sydney.
“I want my dog back. Just drop the dog off, no questions asked,” said Rapponotti.
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