Lady Gaga's Dog Walker Engaged in 'Struggle' to Prevent Kidnapping, and Police Describe 2 Suspects
Ryan Fischer engaged in a struggle Wednesday night while trying to prevent the kidnapping of Lady Gaga's French bulldogs, and he was able to describe his two assailants after getting shot, a Los Angeles police captain tells PEOPLE.
The robbery occurred Wednesday at about 9:40 p.m. on Sierra Bonita Avenue in Hollywood, police have said. A disturbing video of the robbery obtained by TMZ shows Fischer, Gaga's dog walker, being confronted by two men who get out of a car.
One of the men can be heard saying, "Give it up." A struggle ensues during which Fischer appears to say, "Help me," and then a gunshot is heard, causing Fischer to fall. The two assailants get back into the car with the two dogs, and the car leaves the scene. While Fischer is on the ground, another of Gaga's dogs, who was not kidnapped, comes to his side.
Los Angeles Police Capt. Jonathan Tippet tells PEOPLE Fischer was shot one time in the chest and is in stable condition in the hospital. Dr. Fred Pescatore, a friend and former client of Fischer's, tells PEOPLE the victim texted him from the hospital that he was "breathing on his own now."
When asked if Fischer will make a full recovery, Tippet responded, "I believe he will."
Tippet says there are currently two suspects, as described by Fischer. Both are believed to be Black men between the ages of 20-25, and both are at large. The suspects were last seen fleeing the scene in a white four-door Nissan Altima, said Tippet.
Fischer's wallet was not stolen, and Tippet says the suspects "intended to rob the individual of the dogs."
French bulldogs are among the most popular dog breeds and are easy to steal because of their small size, according to dog experts.
Tippet says he believes the suspects are "probably individuals that recognize the value of the dogs," and says there's nothing to indicate that they knew who owned the animals.
Tippet says it's unknown whether Fischer was targeted ahead of time or if the attack was random and spontaneous. "That is something we're investigating," he says.
A rep for Gaga confirmed the singer is offering a $500,000 reward for information about her dogs.
Those with information on the case should email KojiandGustav@gmail.com, the rep says.
Pescatore describes Fischer as someone who cared deeply for the dogs he walked.
"He would do anything for them, anything," Pescatore says. "He would protect these dogs with his life. And he almost has. And let's hope he has not."