Ken and Sarah Laird Kochey are embroiled in a heartbreaking mystery about Bobby, their 2-year-old mixed-breed hunting dog.
On May 1, the batteries in Bobby’s invisible fence collar ran out and, like most dogs would, Bobby went for a walk, traveling from his home in Magnolia Vale a short distance from the Magnolia Bluff Casino.
This is where the mystery begins.
The Kocheys worked with the Adams County Sheriff’s Office and obtained a subpoena for security camera footage from Magnolia Bluff in hopes of finding out if Bobby was there. The casino video did indeed show Bobby and the woman who took him away.
“He walked from Magnolia Vale to the casino and we see this woman on tape taking off his collar and putting a leash on him,” Kochey said. “She talks to the security guy there and says, ‘I’m a vet tech. They said he was a wanderer, but he didn’t look like a wanderer. It’s this big, strong dog that looks very healthy and wears an expensive collar. She told the guy she was going to take him to the Humane Society or something.
The sheriff’s department used the video to locate the woman in Illinois, but for legal reasons a sheriff’s investigator told Kochey she could not share the woman’s name or address with him.
However, the investigator told Kochey that she had been in contact with the woman and that the woman told him she had left the dog in Natchez near Dollar General on US 61 North.
“She told the investigator she chased 61 and let the dog out because she thought he needed to go to the bathroom, but said he wouldn’t get back in the car with her, so she left it there,” Kochey said.
The woman allegedly told the investigator that she was here for a wedding and “thought she was doing the right thing by taking Bobby”.
The sheriff’s investigator did not return a phone call Tuesday seeking more information at press time.
The woman has since returned Bobby’s necklace to the sheriff’s office to be returned to the Kocheys.
The Kocheys continue to search desperately for Natchez for Bobby. They put up flyers, spread the message consistently on social media, and responded to numerous sighting reports, all to no avail.
The family offers a generous reward to anyone who leads them to Bobby.
“It just doesn’t make much sense to me because he was very healthy and obviously not a stray, taking him from where you found him and dropping him off 10 miles away. And she had a leash on him. Why would you let him out of the car without a leash? Kochey asked.
“Our two children are devastated. Bobby is our family’s beloved pet. We also have Bobby’s brother. It’s just not fair,” he said.
If you have any information about Bobby or his whereabouts, please contact Kochey at 917-743-0188.