This story puts a whole new twist on dognapping and ransom. There are some very disturbed individuals out there. I’m posting this as a warning to all parents, of the two-legged variety.
It all started when a 17-year-old girl’s dog went missing. A man called telling her he had found her dog but he wanted money for his safe return.
The girl was at work Friday evening when her family notified her that her dog, Pineapple, a 2-year-old cocker spaniel-toy poodle mix, had disappeared.
Dempkey, calling himself “Anthony,” called the girl – apparently getting the number off the dog’s collar – and told her he had found the dog and wanted $70 for its return.
“At first I was, `OK, someone’s found my dog,” the girl said. “But then when he asked for money and when he said if I didn’t have money he wanted something else, I got scared. He asked for sex.”
The girl said Dempkey also threatened to torture the dog if she didn’t give in to his demands. “I started crying,” she said. “He said, `If you don’t want to do anything or if you don’t want to give up money, I guess you don’t want your dog.”
The girl eventually agreed to meet Dempkey at the El Pollo Loco restaurant at Hawthorne Boulevard and Imperial Highway.
When Dempkey arrived with the dog, he was met instead by the victim’s father and police. He was arrested and the dog was returned, unharmed, to the owner.
Dempkey, it turned out, was a registered sex offender who served a prison term for forced oral copulation, the Daily Breeze reported. He was taken into custody on a suspected parole violation, but police say he could face other charges, including extortion.
Luckily the girl was old enough to realize she needed to tell her parents what happened. A younger or more vulnerable child could easily have been talked into meeting this pervert alone.
While this story had a happy ending it just as easily could have turned tragic. It’s a good idea to talk to your children ahead of time about what to do so they will be prepared in case they are ever confronted with this, or any similar, type of situation.