Lady Gaga
Photo: Ronald Woan

Superstar Lady Gaga’s Dognappers Arrested

The Los Angeles Police Department has confirmed that five suspects have been detained in conjunction with the vicious abduction of Lady Gaga’s dogs earlier this year. 

The arrests came some two months after the singer’s dog walker was shot by gunmen who insisted he hand over the singers three French bulldogs and left the scene with two of them. The dog walker is now in stable condition, and the dogs were released to officials two days later by a woman who claimed to have rescued them.

James Jackson, Jaylin White, and Lafayette Whaley were indicted on charges of attempted murder for their roles in the theft and shooting, according to police. The other two, Harold White and Jennifer McBride, were found to be accomplices of the original crime and are now facing one accusation each of accessory to attempted murder. According to investigators, McBride was the lady who returned the missing puppies. “She ultimately brought the dogs to LAPD Olympic Station,” they added. “Detectives were able to establish McBride had a relationship with the father of one of the suspects, Harold White.”

In a different statement announcing the allegations, Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said, “This was a brazen street crime that left a man seriously wounded… We have alleged very serious charges in this case and have faith that justice will be appropriately served as this case unfolds in court.” According to investigators, four of them are known gang associates in Los Angeles and the perpetrators vary in age from 18 to 50 years old, and all seem to be connected.

The dog walker, Ryan Fischer, has been named as a survivor of the shooting and has written about his rehabilitation on social media, announcing in March that his lung had deteriorated after he was released from the hospital and that he had to get parts of it replaced. The victim took to Instagram documenting details about the night of the shooting stating that he was walking the three dogs around Sierra Bonita Ave. and Sunset Blvd. shortly before 10 p.m. local time when two men in a four-door sedan approached him. The men got out of the vehicle, requested the dogs with a pistol, and “struggled” with Fischer before shooting him. They rode away with Koji and Gustav, two of Gaga’s bulldogs, and left Fischer and the third dog behind. “[Four] days ago, while a car sped away and blood poured from my gun shot wound, an angel trotted over and laid next to me,” Fischer wrote. “Even after it registered that the blood pooling across her tiny body was my own, my terrified cries slowed when I stared at her. I cradled Asia as best I could, praised her for all the incredible experiences we’d had, apologized for not being able to defend her brothers, and then resolved to save them… and myself.” He went on to say that his ordeal had been “a very close call with death” and that he was grateful for the help he had gotten as well as the fact that the dogs had been returned safely.

Fischer was dubbed “forever a hero,” by Lady Gaga, who tweeted at the time that he had sacrificed his life “to fight for our family.”

The dogs were not actually sought for since they belong to the world-famous singer, police said on Thursday. “Detectives do not believe the suspects were targeting the victim because of the dogs’ owner,” police added. “However, evidence suggests the suspects knew the great value of the breed of dogs and was the motivation for the robbery.” French bulldogs are among the most common and costly dog breeds, with an estimated price of $4,000 per dog. In February, Lady Gaga offered a $500,000 reward for their safe return; however, police were unable to confirm if the reward was actually issued. Authorities said McBride “reported that she found the dogs and responded to the reward email”. Her suspected involvement in the kidnapping contradicts previous LAPD statements: The lady who dropped the dogs off at the police department, Capt. Jonathan Tippet informed the Associated Press in February that she seemed to be “uninvolved and unassociated” with the theft.

The case was presented to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office’s violent crimes section on May 6 for filing review, according to police and it is unclear if each person involved had sought legal counsel. According to the study, Jackson, Whaley, and Jaylin White were also charged with attempted murder, conspiracy to commit theft, and second-degree robbery. Jackson is also charged with assault with a semiautomatic weapon and possession of a loaded pistol in an automobile. White is also charged with attack by way of force likely to cause serious bodily harm. According to the office, McBride and Harold White were charged with one count of accessory after the fact. White was charged with one count of weapon possession, and McBride was charged with another count of possessing stolen goods.

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Author: Luke Traina

Photo: Ronald Woan