(WMC-TV) – Missing pet posters that list a desperate pet owner's personal information could bring unexpected results.
One woman claims she was targeted by the very man who stole her pet.
Police say Alonzo Rustin found Marilyn Brown through a missing pet poster. They say he contacted her and tried to sell her dog back.
Brown said her dog "Trouble" was stolen after she chained it up while she was inside a grocery store. She said she agreed to meet Rustin when he called her up offering to sell the dog back.
"This guy claimed somebody walked up to him and sold him the dog for $200," she said.
Brown called police. They organized another meeting with Rustin. That meeting included undercover detectives.
"I say 'You still got my dog?' He said, 'Yeah.' I said, 'How much you want for it today?' He says, 'I'll take a hundred dollars,'" she explained.
"They picked the male up and went to that location where the dog was supposed to be at and when they got there the other detectives pulled in," said investigator Robbie Durbin.
Police discovered the dog at an empty apartment.
This scam is not uncommon.
Investigators have the following advice for pet owners:
Make sure your pet is always properly licensed, tagged, and in a secure location.
If you must place an ad, include only the essential information.
If you get a call from someone who claims to have found your pet, get as much information from them as possible.
If they demand you pay for the pet's return, and you did not offer a reward, call police!
More and more pet owners are becoming the targets of scammers. To learn more about the different types of pet scams, click here.