In Darien, A Woman Who Posted Pictures of Her Stolen Dog Got Results, Leading to Arrest of Thief

This article was written by David Gurliacci and originally published on sister site

Not only did a Darien woman get her stolen dog back, but police arrested a 53-year-old man they accuse of stealing it, and video recordings from the Darien Railroad Station show the man with a brown dog under his arm on the day of the theft, police said.

Darien police gave this account of the matter, including accusations not proven in court:

Aug 18, 2020 arrest photo of Dean Henton, accused of stealing a dog. Photo courtesy Darien Police Dept

On Friday, June 12, a woman left her apartment downtown, but didn’t realize that the back door had been unlocked when she left at 2:00pm.

When she returned at 9:00pm, she found her little brown Dachshund was missing, although all the doors in the apartment were closed, and there was nothing to indicate the dog had broken out of the penned area where it was kept.

The dog was microchipped, so if found, she could prove the dog was hers. She put up postings about the missing dog — and at that point, it appears, she got very lucky. Someone called her to tell her that she believed she had seen the dog at a restaurant in Bridgeport and had asked restaurant employees for the name of the woman who had the pet with her. The caller provided the woman with contact information.

The woman with the dog told the owner that she bought the dog from someone named “Dean” for $40, and passed on the man’s cell phone number. Arrangements were made for the dog’s return.

On Thursday, June 18, the owner contacted Darien police, who identified the cell phone owner as Dean Henton, 53, a Stratford resident. When shown a photo of Henton, the woman who bought the dog was able to identify him as the seller.

Darien Police looked at video recordings from Darien Railroad Station showing Henton on a station platform with a brown dog under his arm. Police applied for and received an arrest warrant for Henton, and on Tuesday, Aug 18, Stratford Police notified Darien Police that they had him in custody.

Henton was arrested, charged with third-degree burglary, larceny from a building and (based on previous arrests) four counts of failure to appear in court. For the new case, he was held on $12,500 bond, and the total bond amount for the four previous cases amounted to $120,000. He didn’t make bail before being taken to court the next day.

Other Cases in Court

According to the state Judicial Branch website, Henton faces these charges in the other cases:

—Offense date: Nov. 9, 2016 (first arrested Sept. 10, 2019) — third-degree burglary; first violation of probation; ; on May 29, 2020, he was charged with first-degree failure to appear in court (a felony) in connection with this case. The case is in state Superior Court in Norwalk.

—Offense date: May 31, 2019 — illegally receiving money from a credit card (less than $500), third-degree identity theft, sixth-degree larceny; on May 29, 2020, he was charged with first-degree failure to appear in court (a felony) in connection with this case. The case is in state Superior Court in Norwalk.

—Offense date: June 15, 2019 (first arrested July 1, 2019) — third-degree burglary, sixth-degree larceny, illegally receiving payment from a credit card; illegally signing for payment from a credit card.

—Offense date: also on June 15, 2019 (first arrested July 24, 2019) — third-degree identity theft, sixth-degree larceny, illegal use of a credit card.

For these four cases, on May 29, , he was charged with four counts of first-degree failure to appear in court (each one a felony) in connection with this case. Each of the cases is in state Superior Court in Norwalk.

Articles about previous arrests of Dean Henton:

Police Say Homeless Man Stole Dishes and Sheets” in Milford (November 2013), Connecticut Post

Man Charged with Credit Card Theft” in Westport (September 2014), Hartford Courant

Man Charged with Stealing Wallets from Office” in Fairfield (February 2015), Fairfield Citizen