LOS ANGELES — A California court on Wednesday sentenced one of the three men involved in the armed robbery of Lady Gaga’s dog walker, in which the singer’s French bulldogs were stolen, to four years in prison.
Jaylin Keyshawn White has admitted to being part of a gang that shot Ryan Fischer while walking the three award-winning pets in Hollywood in February 2021.
At a hearing in Los Angeles on Wednesday, White, now 20, pleaded guilty to second-degree robbery and was sentenced to four years in prison.
Surveillance footage from the scene of the attack shows a car stopping near Fischer and two people jumping out.
One tells Fischer to “surrender” before a fight where a gunshot is heard and the dog walker falls to the ground screaming.
The attackers each grab a dog – Koji and Gustav – leaving Fischer to scream for help.
The third dog – Miss Asia – ran towards the dog walker after the thieves left.
The theft led to the Poker Face singer offering a $500,000 reward for the return of the animals, the theft of which highlighted a growing trend targeting the prized breed.
White was charged in April 2021 along with James Howard Jackson, now 19, and Lafayette Shon Whaley, now 28.
The woman, who police say gave up the dogs in response to the reward, was charged with after-the-fact aiding and receiving stolen property.
The alleged shooter Jackson was falsely released earlier this year after the US Marshals Service described a “clerical error”.
They offered a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to his arrest, saying he should be considered “armed and dangerous”.
Fischer suffered chest injuries in the attack and said on Instagram a month later that he was suffering from a collapsed lung.
Los Angeles police said at the time of the theft they did not believe the dogs were being targeted because of their owner, but because of the breed’s black market value.
Small and friendly – and therefore easy to pick up – French Bulldogs don’t have large litters.
Their relative rarity and association with stars like Lady Gaga, Reese Witherspoon, Hugh Jackman, Chrissy Teigen, Leonardo DiCaprio and Madonna gives them extra cache and means they can change hands for thousands of dollars.
- Editor / additional report by AFP