A Le Roy fox hunter says he had to chase a woman he believes stole his hunting dog this morning at speeds that reached 60 mph on Route 33 before a state trooper arrived on scene and initiated a traffic stop.
The woman, who was in tears, the hunter said, told the trooper, according to Troop A's public information officer, Trooper James O'Callahan, that she thought she had found a lost dog and was taking the animal to State Street Animal Hospital.
The hunter, who asked not to be identified, said he was hunting on Griswold Road with the local property owner when he heard his dog bark. He walked a couple hundred yards down Griswold but the dog was nowhere in sight.
"I thought, there's no way that dog could run that fast," he said.
He went back to his truck and drove back down Griswold. Just then, he saw a sedan pulling away.
The dog was wearing a GPS collar, he said, so he knew the dog was in the car. Pretty soon, he said, he noticed he was still behind the car, but the GPS signal was behind his location, which meant, he believes, the woman with the dog had removed the collar and thrown it out the car window.
He followed the woman down Route 33 and she was eventually stopped at Seven Springs Road.
The problem for the trooper, in deciding whether to file charges against the woman, O'Callahan said, is that the hunter didn't see the woman remove the collar and she said the dog didn't have a collar. Though the collar was found at the location near where the dog was picked up, there isn't sufficient proof the woman removed the collar. Without that, there's no proof of a crime, O'Callahan said.
The owner called The Batavian to clarify that the dog was not taken from a residence.
"I don't want people to think there is somebody going around taking people's dogs from their homes," he said.