CLEVELAND - A local family who now has a dog that is at the center of a criminal charge of petty theft tells Fox 8 that they believe an Army private gave up rights to the dog.
Christina Grapo said her family adopted Buck and adores the Bloodhound.
"We fully believe that Buck was knowingly and willingly relinquished by his previous owner due to the fact that she could no longer care for him, and we are confident that the truth will be proven in court," Grapo told Fox 8. "Buck has become a very important part of our family and we are hopeful that he will get to stay right where he is. He is happy and healthy and we will give him a safe and loving home for as long as he remains with us."
She also provided pictures of the dog.
Army Private Katelyn Gallagher filed a police report in December saying she left Buck with a family friend when she went for military training at the end of May. She said when she returned home for leave, Angelo Sullo, the man she left Buck with, told her he gave the dog away.
Sullo has plead not guilty to a misdemeanor petty theft charge in Cleveland Municipal Court, saying the matter is a misunderstanding and he expects to be vindicated.
Gallagher said she has had Buck since he was a puppy and wants him back.