ROCK HILL, S.C. -- A Rock Hill family is asking for the public’s help in locating their dog stolen right in front of them on Christmas Day.
It happened in the church parking lot of the India Hook Methodist Church at 3300 Mt. Gallant Road in Rock Hill. The family lives behind the church.
The children, along with 7-year-old “Presely,” were outside playing with the new toys they received for Christmas when the unimaginable happened.
Jayden, 9, heard the tires screeching and saw the driver of a four-door sedan turn the car around, and head into the parking lot.
He said she then proceeded to get out of the car and grab Presely by the collar.
"My dog was actually pulling away. They just kept on dragging her. My sister kept on yelling Presely's name,” he said.
Trinity, 12, described the driver as a white woman in her mid-twenties. She says it was dark outside, but thinks the woman was driving a blue-grey, or possibly purplish sedan. She believes there was also someone sitting in the passenger seat.
"I was running back to the house to tell my mom, and I looked back out there and they were just driving off,” she said.
"It's been heartbreaking for us as a family, because she is one of our kids. It's obvious she belonged to somebody, and they took her anyway,” said Tammy Stewart, the children’s mother.
Stewart says the dog had on her collar, but did not on have her tags.
She and her family have since posted flyers around the neighborhood. They’ve posted her picture and information on the York County Lost Pet Facebook page, even putting out an ad on Craigslist in Charlotte and Columbia.
"Everytime we hear a dog bark in the neighborhood, we hesitate, thinking it may be her,” said the children’s father, Bryan Stewart.
Along with a bark, Presely, a border-collie wolf hybrid has a distinct look and howl. The family can’t understand why anyone would steal a member of their family.
"I try and put myself in their shoes, like if I see an absolute gorgeous dog, on the side of the road, but if I see the kids, calling her name, as I'm about to lead her to my car, I would stop, because I would know that's their dog,” said Gaige Chambers.
Chamber, who is now 16 years old, says he was present when Presley was born.
"She is just the most affectionate dog, you could tell she just loved you. I just want to see her again, I really just miss her,” he said.
“We just hope someone would re-think what they've done, and return Presely to us. My youngest son was two when Presely came into our lives, so all three kids have grown up with her, and we never expected this to happen,” said Bryan Stewart.
If you have any information on the dog’s whereabouts, you can contact the family by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the York County Sheriff’s department.