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$4,100 puppy stolen from Petland; alleged thief identified via social media
Criminal court

$4,100 puppy stolen from Petland; alleged thief identified via social media

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RACINE — The man who allegedly stole a $4,100 Yorkshire terrier puppy from Petland, 2310 S. Green Bay Road, in February has been charged.

Surveillance footage of the alleged thief — later identified to be 26-year-old Kyle James Czarnecki, of Oak Creek — were sent to news outlets by the Racine Police Department and posted on social media. According to police, Czarnecki had told a Petland employee that he was looking for a dog to give his girlfriend as a gift. After he picked out the 16-week-old Yorkshire terrier, he allegedly fled through the back of the store without paying.

Racine Police reported that several citizens and law enforcement personnel identified the person in the surveillance footage as Czarnecki after seeing the surveillance footage. An arrest warrant was issued in April, and Czarnecki was charged with felony theft, felony retail theft and misdemeanor bail jumping.

Czarnecki has prior convictions for theft and illegal entry into a construction site in 2015, and an OWI in 2017. He is also currently facing charges for possession of drug paraphernalia, operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent and multiple counts of theft.

Czarnecki was in court Tuesday and a preliminary court hearing has been scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on Aug. 21 at the Racine County Law Enforcement Center, 717 Wisconsin Ave. He remained in custody as of Wednesday at the County Jail.

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