White van exonerated

No apparent connections to recent dog-nappings

Tales of a white van connected to a string of Chico dog-nappings are apparently bogus.

According to a press release from the Butte County Sheriff’s Office, a white van in north Chico was seen driving away “erratically” when the owner of a dog noticed that the animal was missing. About a week later, the dog was found dead in the owner’s backyard. An autopsy showed no signs of foul play, but the possibility of poisoning hasn’t been ruled out.

Reports of the white van resurfaced after the attempted theft of a bulldog on North Cherry Street. When officials contacted the owner, he said he never saw a white van.

The third dog reported missing soon after on San Ramon Drive was found at the Tehama County Animal Shelter in Red Bluff. According to the press release, the dog was placed there by a family member who no longer wanted it around.