Phineas via STLtoday.com
Phineas, a 4-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever, has been making waves in the Ozark town of Salem Missouri for more than 16 months. The bizarre case began on a Friday afternoon in June of 2012, when Phineas allegedly bit a young child playing in the Sander's family yard.After reading what would turn out to be a faulty police report, the town’s mayor deemed Phineas a ‘vicious animal,’ and sentenced him to euthanasia, which was delayed by a court appeal.Desperate to save the doomed doggy, Phineas supporters contacted the Lexus Project, a dog rescue based in upstate New York. The group created the Save Phineas Facebook page
, which garnered over 100 thousand “likes,” and brought Phineas’ plight into the national spotlight. Soon there were rallies, bumper stickers, and even a “Save Phineas” billboard, all fighting to free the popular pup.During the court proceedings, Phineas was held by the city in a number of “undisclosed” locations, including a no kill animal shelter, and the dark, dingy basement of a local firehouse.When supporters found out about the conditions of Phineas’ temporary dwellings, they fought for him to be transported to a more comfortable veterinary clinic.
A Mysterious Turn
That’s where Phineas was when he was kidnapped on October 11th
, 2013. With no sign of a break in, police were stumped as to who took Phineas, and how.Phineas’ family said they received a mysterious letter indicating that he was safe, but were unsure of his whereabouts. The dog was missing for over 2 weeks, until the day after the final trial which would determine his fate.On Friday, Oct. 25th
, the judge overturned Phineas’ death sentence, making him a free dog. The very next day, Phineas was returned to his family, who after over a year of drama greeted him with an abundance of relief, excitement, and affection. Who his rescuer was remains a mystery.You can learn more about Phineas' journey on the Save Phineas Facebook Page
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