THE image of the man who stole a German Shepherd puppy from Poole Quay has been released by police.

Craig Anthony Morgan, 36, of Melbury Avenue, Poole, pleaded guilty to one count of theft and was sentenced to 10 months imprisonment, suspended for two years, at Bournemouth Crown Court.

The court heard how Andrew Smith was waiting outside Tesco Express in Quay Road with puppy Bear when Morgan approached.

Bournemouth Echo:

The defendant stroked the dog, unclipped it from its leash, told the owner “I have you dog”, before fleeing on a Beryl bike.

A victim impact statement from Mr Smith said: “We were so thrilled and happy when we first got Bear, since this awful crime it has taken that away.

“Bear is a member of the family, no person should have the right to take a family member away.”

Bournemouth Echo:

Recorder Nicholas Haggan QC said: “It was, in every sense of the word, a very mean offence.

“It is right that I should mention the views of the victims in this case. It is perfectly clear that what you did caused enormous distress.

“They now feel uncomfortable when they go out, they no longer enjoy the act of walking their dog which gives pleasure to every dog owner.

“The one thing that saves you from an immediate sentence is the fact you did not make attempts to sell the dog.”

Morgan was also ordered to carry out 20 rehabilitation requirement days and undertake 200 hours of unpaid work.