Burglary suspect named in Naperville Petland puppy theft

A man awaiting trial for an alleged Aurora burglary has been charged with last month’s theft of a purebred Pomeranian puppy, who’s still missing, from a pet shop on Naperville‘s far west side.

Naperville police Cmdr. Jason Arres confirmed Wednesday that a $50,000 warrant has been issued for the arrest of Benjamin Ocasio Jr., 27. He last lived on the 200 block of Spruce Street in Aurora.

Ocasio has been charged with retail theft in connection with the Sept. 4 incident at Petland in the Fox River Commons shopping center, near Aurora Avenue and Route 59.

Video surveillance tape filmed about 4:21 p.m. that day showed a man and a woman walking out of the Petland with Bella, a 12-week-old, black and white, female Pomeranian dog valued at $2,500.

Ocasio and a 27-year-old female relative were quickly identified by police from the tape. Arres said both were interviewed in the days and weeks following the alleged theft.

“The investigation led to (Ocasio) being charged with the crime,” Arres said. “The facts of the case led to only Ocasio being charged ‚Ķ (while) the female who was with him will not be charged with the crime.”

Using statements and other information gleaned during the investigation, police began looking for the puppy, which the pair claimed to have abandoned in the backyard of a home near New York and Root streets in Aurora.

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