Today's heartwarming holiday tale is brought to you by a little girl and her dog: a good Samaritan reunited a seven-year-old with her Ruby Cavalier King Charles Spaniel on Christmas Eve, after the dog was stolen from a food store in Washington Heights.
On Monday morning at about 10 a.m., Mia Bendrat was food shopping at La Rosa Fine Foods on Broadway and 176th St with her mother, Angie Estrada, and her mother's boyfriend. They left Mia's dog, Marley, tied outside, but when they finished shopping less than ten minutes later, Marley was gone. "Our world changed at 10 o'clock," Estrada told DNAinfo. "I was horrified, but I'm trying to hold it together for Mia."
Luckily for Mia, who got Marley for Christmas two years ago and describes him as her "best friend," Tena Cohen, a Spanish teacher at Brooklyn Tech High School in Fort Greene, was walking through Union Square later that day when she spotted a man trying to sell a dog on the street. And something about the situation seemed fishy: "It looked nervous and sad, and was kind of an older dog," Cohen told the Post. "I figured it was stolen." Cohen bought the dog for $220 and brought him to her vet.
She also contacted a rescue group that recalled an earlier Post story about the missing dog, and they were able to reunite Marley with an ecstatic Mia. "This was the best present ever," Estrada told CBS. Police have arrested Brad Bacon, 29, for the theft, and say a surveillance video taken outside the Washington Heights grocery store shows Bacon untying Marley and walking off with him.