A puppy that Hempstead Village Mayor Wayne Hall reported stolen from his backyard on Friday has been found -- in his garage.
After using social media to post a $500 reward for the return of his 8-month-old beagle, Hall said Saturday evening that he had found Rocco unharmed at his Weir Street residence in Hempstead.
Hall said the garage was locked at the time of Rocco's disappearance on Friday night.
"I don't have an explanation for it," he said of the dog's sudden reappearance. "I can't understand it."
Hall, who filed a police report, said it's possible someone stole Rocco, then had a change of heart, dropping off the pet in his garage.
The puppy was playing outside Hall's home shortly before 9 p.m. Friday when he made an unusual whimpering sound, the mayor said.
By the time Hall reached the backyard to check on Rocco, the black and brown dog was gone. Hall said his yard is fenced in and Rocco could not have escaped on his own.
Hall bought the puppy in March as a gift to himself after voters elected him to a third term.
"He became an integral member of our family," he said.