Catnapping Talk of Gold Rush Town

 A reward is being offered for the return of a valuable ceramic cat stolen from its rooftop perch in an old section of downtown Woodland.

The figurine, known simply as "Green Cat," was displayed above the Monley Cronin Construction business at 419 Main St. The work was created by Sacramento artist Gary Dinnen for the Woodland Art Center.

The purloined feline, said to be worth about $1,000, is one of several such cats on display in the area of Dead Cat Alley. The art was taken sometime between May 29 and June 4, said Sgt. Derrek Kaff of the Woodland police.

A $200 reward is being offered by the Woodland Art Center for the arrest and conviction of the catnapper.

Police described the cat as 2 feet tall and green, black and blue. It also has a pink tongue.

In November 2006, another cat sculpture was stolen from Wirth Furniture and Interiors on Main Street. After extensive news reports, that cat was recovered by police. That theft was later linked to juveniles, police said.

Dead Cat Alley is steeped in history. One of the first buildings in Woodland, then known as Yolo City, was built in the 1850s at the corner of First Street and the alley.

The origins of the alley's name are unclear, but it was officially named Dead Cat Alley by the City Council in 1962. Archaeologists excavating in the area in the early 1980s found cat bones.

Anyone with information about the ceramic cat may contact Woodland Community Services Officer Dale Phillips at 530-406-5750 ext. 1634.

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