Just hours after Jeanett (26) and Emilie (26) took this New Year’s photo, the cat Bellini was stolen from their apartment.
Jeanett Hallstensen (26) celebrated New Year’s Eve at home in the apartment in Oslo, where she lives with two friends and the cat Bellini (nine months).
– I was there with the closest group of friends. After we had been on Sankthanshaugen and watched the rockets at midnight, we went back to the apartment where a few more acquaintances joined, Jeanett says.
She went to bed at two o’clock, but the cat Bellini prefers a slightly warmer temperature in the bedroom, and lay in the next room.
When Jeanett got up at 12 o’clock on New Year’s Day, her beloved Bellini, a female cat of the breed British shorthair, had disappeared without a trace.
– I completely broke down, panicked, says Jeanett.
It eventually turned out that there had been guests in the apartment during the night that she did not know.
Thus, Jeanett, her boyfriend and her friend Emilie Tostrup started their own, comprehensive investigation to track down the cat.
– For 36 hours we sat sleepless while we did a deep dive in social media and on Google in the hope of finding her. Eventually, we made contact with the family and the network around those who took Bellini. Along the way, we had a continuous dialogue with the police to update them, Jeanett says.
Many shared their request for help on social media, and finally a person in Lillehammer contacted useful information about where the cat could be.
– It turned out to be true, and the police found Bellini at the given address. We have received very good help from the police in both Oslo and Lillehammer, says Jeanett Hallstensen.
Together with her boyfriend, she got in the car and drove to the police station in Lillehammer to be reunited with her cat.
– It’s the happiest day of my life, because I did not think I would see her again. Now I cry with joy, she says.
Cats of Bellini’s breed are sold for up to 15,000 kroner, and Jeanett believes that the price has to do with the abduction.
– Luckily she was completely unharmed when I got her back. She just seemed a little confused, but now it’s all right. Today she has received lots of good food and even more love than she might want, Jeanett laughs.
She thanks her boyfriend, her friend Emilie and the police for good help, and would like to share some advice after the drama she has been through.
– First of all, never let acquaintances invite with strangers home. But if you should first experience something like this, then do your own research to find addresses, report on social media and give all you have of information to the police. It simplifies police work and increases the chance of finding kidnapped pets.
She adds that this story would not have ended happily if there had not been so many who had engaged.
– People have been so wonderfully helpful. I have really regained my faith in love in this world!
– It is true that a cat was stolen from an apartment on 1 January 2022, confirms police attorney Vilde Humlegård in an e-mail to VG.
– After the report was received the next day, contact was established between the victim and the police – and with good assistance from the owner of the cat, the cat was located and returned to the victim about two days later, she writes and adds that there is no arrested in the case and that the police do not know the motive behind the action.
When asked how common such cat abductions are, Humlegård answers:
– The fact that a cat is stolen from an apartment is probably rather an unusual message and mission – also for the police.
Chief of Order Frode Øvreås in the police in Lillehammer confirms that they were contacted by the police in Oslo on Sunday around 4 pm.
– They then worked on a case that included information about a stolen cat. This was stolen by two named people, and there was also information that the cat was placed with a third person here in Lillehammer. The police went to the person who was to keep the cat and it was found there just before 5 pm, Øvreås writes in an e-mail.