River North

Chicago Woman Issues Desperate Call For Help After Dog Goes Missing From Parked Car in River North

The 13-year-old dog was taken outside a parked car with the owner inside

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Anguish and desperation have begun to set in for River North resident Mari Roda, who is now offering a $500 reward for information on her missing dog.

Roda's dog Lolita was last seen on Monday night in River North in the backseat of her Honda CRV.

Roda told NBC 5 she was waiting for her daughters to get out of work at 9:15 p.m. when a group of four young men approached her car, and she says she thought nothing of it.

"I got a text from my daughters, letting me know at what time they'd get out of work, and when I saw them coming out of the restaurant they asked me 'Where is Lolita?,'' Mari Roda said.

Thinking her daughters were joking, she told them the dog was in the back seat where she usually was, but when she looked, the dog was gone.

In a matter of minutes, her life was turned upside down, unsure of where her dog could have gone.

"This is not the first time that Lolita goes with me to wait for my daughters. She always waits in the backseat," Roda said. "She's not friendly, but I never heard her back, so I don't understand how they took her so quickly. I just want other pet owners to be safe and aware of how quickly this could happen."

Roda said she has been looking everywhere for her dog since that Monday night. She called 911 after the dog was taken, hoping an officer would respond, but dispatchers told her they were to busy to send anyone.

She drove around the neighborhood for hours hoping she'd find Lolita, but she did not. Finally at 1 a.m. she decided to go to the police.

“I was desperate I didn’t know what to do, I just drove around looking to find her, I couldn’t find her anywhere and then it was like 1 o'clock in the morning already and I just went to the police station to fill out the report in person, but nothing happened yet," Roda said.

She said she has checked with shelters in the area and calls them daily to no avail. Lolita is microchipped, and her owner hopes that someone will do the right thing and return her.

"I am begging to anyone who has it please just return it because they don’t know how painful it is my heart is breaking in pieces," Roda said.

Mari is now offering up to a $500 reward for Lolita's safe return. She says she will continue to work with police in hopes of getting answers about her dog's disappearance.

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