QUEENSBURY -- Two Queensbury residents have been charged with possessing a $2,500 puppy that was stolen last week from a Queensbury pet store, police said.
Shawn A. Hewitt, 21, and Gabrielle VanBrielle, 22, were each charged with fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property for having a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel that had been taken from Happy Tails on Corinth Road.
Warren County sheriff’s officers determined Monday that the dog was at an apartment at Montcalm Apartments in Queensbury. VanBrielle lives there and Hewitt was found hiding there, police said.
Hewitt was wanted on a parole violation warrant and was charged with obstructing governmental administration for hiding, while VanBrielle was charged with hindering prosecution for allowing him to hide, police said.
A second wanted man, Travis LaPlant, 23, of Glens Falls, was also found hiding in the apartment. He was being sought by Glens Falls Police on a felony criminal contempt charge and was turned over to them.
“Hewitt was hiding in a closet and LaPlant was hiding in the bathroom behind the shower curtain,” sheriff’s Lt. Steve Stockdale said.
VanBrielle told police Hewitt had bought the puppy for her, Stockdale said.
The dog was returned to the pet store.
Susan Purdue, owner of the store, said the 11-week-old purebred was doing well on Tuesday. She said the store has beefed up security in light of the theft.
Hewitt has two prior felony convictions and was paroled from state prison Dec. 17 after serving the minimum portion of a 1-1/3 to 4-year prison term for a felony criminal possession of stolen property conviction that stemmed from a wallet theft in Glens Falls.
Hewitt was being held in Warren County Jail while VanBrielle was released pending prosecution in Queensbury Town Court.