STUDIO CITY—On Monday, February 6, the Los Angeles Police Department North Hollywood Division held a news conference announcing the arrest of a suspect accused of kidnapping two French bulldogs in the 4100 block of Kraft Avenue. Canyon News spoke with Detective Noah Stone who provided details about the arrest of the suspect.
On Friday, December 9, 2022, at around 10 a.m., a nine-month pregnant woman – Cindy Nelson – was walking her two French bulldogs, Gizmo and Milo, when she was approached by an armed male suspect. The suspect – identified as Sammeiso Leonard Lewis, 27, of Las Vegas – pointed a pistol at Nelson and kidnapped both dogs. Lewis fled with the dogs in a gray SUV.
Approximately 10 hours later, Gizmo and Milo were left with an unknown woman walking her dogs in the Hollywood area. The woman used their dog tags to call the owners, and Gizmo and Milo were returned home safely.
“I know frenchies are a target and I never thought that would happen here. I never thought that I would be targeted in this neighborhood, but I guess you’re not safe anywhere,” Nelson told ABC7.
According to Detective Stone, on December 9, 2022 a person contacted Nelson via telephone in an attempt to extort money for the safe return of Gizmo and Milo. That phone call led to multiple search warrants that led to identifying Lewis as the suspect who attempted to extort money from the victim and committed the actual robbery.
On January 26, 2023, Lewis was arrested in Glendale by a LAPD/US Marshall’s Joint Task Force. Information about Lewis’s bail amount or court date were not disclosed.
The incident occurred two years after Lady Gaga’s dog walker was shot and robbed of her two French bulldogs, Gustav and Koji.
Detective Stone shared safety tips for walking dogs:
- Avoid distractions like being on your cellphone (keep with you in your pocket in case of emergency)
- If you have to walk your dog in hours of darkness, pick a well-lit area.
- If possible try to walk with others
- Make sure your dogs have collars
- Chip your dogs or their collars
- If you see something, say something