Arrest made in car theft, death of disabled dog

OAKLAND PARK, FLA. (WSVN) - Police have made an arrest in the case of a disabled dog that was found dead after it was inside a stolen car.

Wilton Manors Police arrested 19-year-old Jephthe Jean Francois, Wednesday, on 15 charges including grand theft auto and animal cruelty.

When police caught Francois, he had a GPS monitor on his ankle, and officials traced it back to the parking lot that the car was stolen from.

According to investigators, Francois stole a car outside of a Dollar Tree in Oakland Park that had a disabled 13-year-old husky mix named Zorra in the back with the AC on.

Ferrari said the dog was her constant companion as she dealt with a breast cancer recurrence.

“She was with me with my first battle with breast cancer and I was hoping she’d be there for the second,” said Wanda Ferrari, Zorra’s owner. “She’s my rock. She’s my heart. I rescued her and then she rescued me and I really need her now.”

Ferrari parked her car in a handicap parking space last Thursday.

Surveillance video showed Francois opening the front door and then driving off.

“I rescued her and she rescued me,” said Ferrari. “I really need her now.”

Broward Sheriff’s Deputies found the vehicle several days later with Zorra’s body inside.

“He stole the vehicle. He discarded the vehicle leaving this dog stranded to its own devices,” said

“I just don’t understand. I don’t understand why they didn’t put her out of the car,” said Ferrari as she held back tears. “I don’t understand it.”

According to Wilton Manors Police, Francois and Calvin Docilma burglarized a home in Wilton Manors, Wednesday afternoon.

The two used a white Chrysler to get away, but after a short chase the two were arrested.

After capturing the two suspects, officials found the keys to Ferrari’s Volvo in the Chrysler.

Officials said Francois left the dog in the vehicle to die in extreme heat.

Francois appeared before a judge on Thursday morning and was ordered no bond.

He is being held at the Broward County jail.

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