Man who stole puppy at gunpoint gets 20 months in prison

He now faces more charges in Oregon

By Paris Achen, Columbian courts reporter

Published:

Updated: April 22, 2013, 5:17 PM

 

A Vancouver man was sentenced Monday in Clark County Superior Court to 20 months in prison for stealing an English bulldog puppy at gunpoint Oct. 19 in a parking lot at Clackamas Town Center near Portland.

Jajuane D. Etheridge, 23, pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of a firearm and possession of stolen property. He was prosecuted first in Clark County because he took the 10-week-old puppy to his Vancouver residence on Plomondon Street, where he was arrested Oct. 21 after a three-hour standoff with a SWAT team. Police found Harpo, the puppy, unharmed inside a suitcase after they saw the piece of luggage moving.

Etheridge also has been served with a Clackamas County, Ore., warrant charging him with two counts of first-degree robbery with a firearm, two counts of second-degree robbery with a firearm and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon related to the Oct. 19 incident, according to that county’s Circuit Court. He has waived extradition to Oregon on those charges, said Clark County Deputy Prosecutor Mike Dodds.

Etheridge didn’t speak during his five-minute sentencing hearing Monday in front of Judge David Gregerson. The victims were not present.

Etheridge stole the $2,000 puppy after responding to a Craigslist post advertising dogs for sale. He arranged to meet the sellers, an Oregon couple, along with puppy Harpo and another dog, in a mall parking lot. He said he’d pay $4,000 for both dogs.

Instead, Etheridge brandished a gun and took the then-9-pound Harpo by force, according to court documents.

He reportedly wanted to give Harpo to his ex-girlfriend’s daughter.

His ex-girlfriend tipped off police about the dog’s location after she saw a news story on the bulldog-napping, according to Vancouver police. She went online and learned the suspect’s description matched her ex-boyfriend’s and that the suspect used a silver handgun: She owns one and knew Etheridge had access to it. The puppy also matched the description of the stolen bulldog.

Paris Achen: 360-735-4551; http://twitter.com/Col_Courts;http://facebook.com/ColTrends;paris.achen@columbian.com.