It was Roxy’s bi-monthly trip to get her nails clipped at the veterinarian’s office in Kissimmee.
Linda Jackson, 70, took the pit-bull and basset-hound mix for her elderly mother, who no longer drives. After their appointment at the Osceola Animal Clinic on Main Street, she packed the tan-and-black pooch in the back seat of her Kia Sportage.
That’s when a teenager approached and demanded her keys, authorities said. He ended up making off with the SUV — and Roxy.
“He knocked off my glasses and stepped on them, and I was just screaming, ‘Let me have the dog!’” Jackson said. “The car didn’t really matter at that point. I wanted the dog.”
The teen got away after the July 7 incident, and police say he carjacked another woman the following day as she was loading groceries into her vehicle outside a Kissimmee Wal-Mart.
The 16-year-old boy was arrested this week in Orange County and faces several charges, including grand-theft auto, battery on a person over 65, carjacking and aggravated animal abuse.
Police said Jackson’s vehicle was stolen about 3:30 p.m. and found about an hour later behind some warehouses on Smith Street.
Jackson said she and her husband found Roxy was still in the turned-off vehicle but “was a mess” and had her tongue hanging out because the windows were rolled up. Officers were forced to break a window to rescue her.
Roxy was taken back to the animal clinic to be checked out. The pup was OK and given back to Jackson, officials said.
Jackson said the only things missing from her vehicle were Roxy’s leash, collar and a rap CD that she bought with her grandson.
The following day, a woman was parked outside a Wal-Mart on East Osceola Parkway when the same teen hopped into her vehicle and drove off, police spokeswoman Stacie Miller said.
Police said the woman was loading groceries into the trunk but left the vehicle running and her driver’s side door open.
Officials found the vehicle Tuesday in Orange County. Four people, including the teen, fled but were taken into custody, Miller said.
The 16-year-old boy, who police say was spotted on surveillance footage near the warehouses and outside Wal-Mart, was found with the stolen vehicle’s keys. Police said they found BB guns and burglary tools inside the vehicle, along with items they think might be stolen.