It was equal parts brutal and bizarre: Somebody shot the man walking Lady Gaga's three French bulldogs in Los Angeles on Wednesday night and stole two of the animals. The dog walker is recuperating in the hospital, the singer has offered a big reward for her dogs, and the LAPD is investigating. Coverage:
- Victim: The victim is identified by TMZ as Ryan Fischer, and Page Six reports that the 30-year-old recently moved to LA from Hudson, New York. His social media feeds make clear his love of dogs, especially Lady Gaga's. Police say Fischer was ambushed near his home in Hollywood about 9:40pm, and the AP reports he was shot once but is expected to survive.
- One escape: A pair of assailants got out of a car and took two of Gaga's dogs, Koji and Gustav, police tell the AP. Footage from KABC shows that Fischer had a third dog near him as he was being treated at the scene. Police took away that dog, Miss Asia, and Gaga's bodyguard later picked her up from the police station, per Refinery29.
- Video: TMZ has video of the actual confrontation and shooting, but be warned that it's disturbing. A neighbor gave up the video after hearing from Gaga's team that it might help. Fischer calls for help as he struggles with the assailants. After each assailant takes one dog into the car, the third dog, Miss Asia, runs to the injured Fischer.
- Reward: Gaga, currently in Italy on a movie shoot, is offering a no-questions-asked $500,000 reward and set up the email KojiandGustav@gmail.com for information, per TMZ. In 2016, she posted an image on social media of the new puppy who would become Gustav.
- Motive: The LAPD's robbery-homicide division has taken over the case. "The motive is resale," the founder of SNORT Rescue for bulldogs tells People. "Thieves know they can get a couple thousand dollars for them." French bulldogs from reputable breeders can go for up to $5,000, and those with certain "designer coats" can sell for twice that much. The site notes that French bulldogs are the fourth most popular breed in the US.
- Suspects: Police say the shooter used a semiautomatic handgun, and both assailants fled in a light-colored sedan. No further descriptions have surfaced. Nor is it clear whether they knew the dogs belonged to Lady Gaga.
- Gaga: The 34-year-old "is completely devastated and sickened by this," an insider tells Entertainment Tonight. Fischer is not only a dog walker but a friend, and "her dogs are her babies," the source adds.
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