Pet Store Owner Improving After Fall Through Roof

Fell while investigate stolen animal case

 The co-owner of a Fremont pet boutique who was seriously injured  when he fell from the store's roof Thursday morning while trying to  investigate how 17 puppies were stolen is doing much better but is still a  little confused, a friend said.

Omid Mehdavi, a 28-year-old Hayward man, is getting a lot of his  memory back but is still only about 50 percent of normal and remains in the  intensive care unit at Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley, according to  Arvin Omar.

Omar said he's a friend of Mehdavi and has helped out at the Puppy  Love Boutique at 5174 Mowry Ave. in Fremont in the past and is helping to run  the store while Mehdavi is away.

Fremont police didn't return phone calls today seeking an update  on the investigation into the burglary, but Omar said police have told store  officials they have some good leads.

Omar said "hundreds of people" have visited the store since the  incident to offer their sympathy and support for Mehdavi.

"They feel bad" about what happened, he said.

Sgt. Jeff Swadener said last week that Mehdavi suffered major head  injuries when he fell from an overhang about 15 feet high, through a skylight  and onto the cement in front of the store.

The fall occurred about 10 a.m. Thursday while police were at the  store filing a report on the burglary.

Swadener said employees opened the shop around 8:30 a.m. Thursday  and found 17 of their high-end puppies missing, in addition to the puppies'  paperwork and other supplies, but they could not figure out how the burglar  or burglars got inside.

The missing canines included purebred Dalmatians, Saint Bernards,  Pekinese poodles and schnauzers, among other breeds. They ranged from 9 to 13  weeks old and could have sold for $650 to $1,100 each. The robber or robbers  "knew what they were looking for because they left common and less expensive  puppies," Swadener said.

While police were inside the store, Mehdavi saw some tiles in the  ceiling that were possibly displaced. He decided to use a ladder to get onto  the roof and try and find out if the person or persons who stole the puppies  used the roof for an entrance.

Swadener did not know what caused Mehdavi to fall.

He said police were investigating many possible motives for the  burglary, including construction workers who have access to many stores in  the strip mall, former employees and local activist groups who have protested  at the store in the past.

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