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Submitted by on 1, November 11, 2010 – 8:26 amNo Comment

Alameda Police say they have recovered Deuce, the 6-year-old Yorkshire purebred that was stolen from an 80-year-old woman during an October 30 robbery.

Police said a 24-year-old Stockton resident who saw news reports about the stolen dog called police Wednesday, saying he had bought the dog from a man and a woman for $20. They said they reunited Deuce with his owner, Helen Bignone, on Wednesday night.

“They were both overjoyed to see each other,” police said.

Police have arrested a 19-year-old Oakland man in connection with the robbery and are looking at another person of interest who they said was tentatively identified as an accomplice and is wanted on parole violations on criminal charges unrelated to the crime, they said.

Police originally believed Deuce had been sold, but they later said they believed the suspects released the dog in a Stockton park.

The suspects approached Bignone at around 2 p.m. October 30 as she walked in the area of Encinal Avenue and Fountain Street. One suspect simulated a gun and demanded her purse and Deuce and when she refused, the suspects took both and fled in a 1995 Oldsmobile. Police said Bignone’s purse has also been recovered.

Alameda police searched neighborhoods and distributed leaflets around Stockton in an effort to recover Deuce, they said. They received several telephone tips regarding the stolen dog. They thanked people for donating to Deuce’s reward fund and the media for getting the story out.

“Police work can be challenging at times, but seeing the joy in Mrs. Bignone’s face when Deuce was put into her arms was extremely rewarding,” police said.

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