Investigation continues into Chico dog theft, death

Jan 29, 2014 12:20 PM

The Butte County Sheriff’s Office continues its investigation into the theft of Cody, a pure-bred Australian Shepherd reported stolen in Chico on January 7. At this time, the Sheriff’s Office has not been able to link the white van Cody was reportedly taken in to any other reported dog thefts nor have they determined the events that led up to Cody’s theft and subsequent death.

Earlier this month, Beth Koch saw a white van driving erratically away from her home on Rio Grande Drive in Chico at the time her dog Cody went missing. Although Koch did not see Cody inside the van, the timing of Cody’s disappearance and the van speeding away have led investigators to believe the van was involved. A week later, Cody was found dead in Koch’s backyard with no obvious signs of trauma. The possibility of Cody being poisoned has not been ruled out as a toxicology report is pending, the Sheriff’s Office has indicated.

In the following weeks an attempted theft of a Bulldog was reported on N. Cherry Street. In that incident it was initially reported the victim indicated they had seen a white van similar to the one seen by Koch earlier in the month. After contacting the victim in this case investigators learned that no such van was seen by the victim as they chased the suspect down the street. The victim was not able to associate any specific vehicle to the suspect.

Sheriff’s investigators followed up on a third reported dog theft on San Ramon Drive but the dog was returned after it was discovered a family member who did not want the dog at the residence had taken it to the Tehama County Animal Shelter.

The Sheriff’s Office is awaiting the results of Cody’s toxicology with the hopes it will help detectives move forward with their investigation.


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