Kitten believed stolen during Humane Society adoption event

Washington Humane Society officials are pleading for the public’s help in locating a kitten they believe was stolen during an adoption event Sunday, authorities said.

The eight-week-old kitten, named Callista, seems to have disappeared sometime between noon and 7 p.m. Sunday, when the Human Society allowed dozens of prospective pet owners to interact with cats at its northeast D.C. adoption center on New York Avenue, said Scott Giacoppo, the group’s vice president for external affairs. He said staffers accounted for the kitten before the event began and first noticed her missing as they took inventory when the event ended, and they believe someone probably walked off with her in between.

“That’s our biggest fear,” Giacoppo said.

Giacoppo said the room where prospective owners are allowed to play with the cats is closed, and it is inside another closed room — meaning it is unlikely Callista escaped on her own. He said staffers had “searched the building high and low,” making sure the kitten was not placed in the wrong cage after the event, and found no signs of her.

“If she did escape, she would have gone right out into our parking lot. Someone would have seen her,” Giacoppo said.


Callista, an 8-week-old kitten Humane Society officials believe was stolen during an adoption event Sunday. (Courtesy of the Humane Society)

Giacoppo said the group’s executive director was filing a police report Monday to report the suspected theft. He said staffers were also reviewing footage from surveillance cameras in the buildings, but at least initially, they did not seem to show anyone taking the kitten or the kitten wandering off on its own.

Thefts during adoption events are rare, but not unheard of, Giacoppo said. He said they typically involve someone who was denied a pet to adopt or who might not have wanted to wait in line to complete the adoption process.

Anyone with information is asked to call the humane society at 202-576-6664.

Matt Zapotosky covers the federal district courthouse in Alexandria, where he tries to break news from a windowless office in which he is not allowed to bring his cell phone.
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