Police now believe Lady Gaga may have been the target of the thieves who shot her assistant and stole two of her French bulldogs, according to TMZ. The singer is currently offering a half-million-dollar ransom for the safe return of her pets, which may have been the point all along. Using a neighbor’s security video that caught the robbery in progress, police theorize that the assailants were aware of just whose dogs they were taking.
Adding to the fact that the thieves’ white sedan pulls up alongside Gaga’s assistant Ryan Fischer in the video, law enforcement sources told TMZ that Fischer wasn’t exactly secretive about his employer. He told “numerous people” in the neighborhood that the dogs belonged to the singer, so it was seemingly common knowledge. Meanwhile, due to the darkness of the street, police don’t think the thieves would have been able to tell that the dogs were valuable French bulldogs — although dognapping and pet ransom are pretty common in affluent neighborhoods, as residents usually offer rewards for “missing” pets that thieves often return to collect.
However, rarely is a case so high-profile as this one is, or as violent. The fact that Fischer was accosted and shot suggests the thieves may have targeted him specifically, knowing the dogs’ owner was one of the biggest pop stars on the planet and being willing to use extreme measures to get ahold of the ransom money. Further complicating things is the fact that Gaga’s dogs were never chipped, so identifying them if they are sold out-of-state — another common tactic of dognappers — will be very difficult.
Gaga’s father spoke out against the attack on Fox News, saying “Our whole family is upset and praying Koji and Gustavo are not harmed. Help us catch these creeps.”