Lady Gaga dognapping: Woman charged over dog theft is now suing star over $500,000 'no questions asked' reward

A woman charged in connection with the theft of Lady Gaga's French bulldogs after they were dognapped at gunpoint is now suing the star, alleging she was denied a $500,000 "no questions asked" reward, according to a court filing.

Jennifer McBride was one of five co-defendants charged in connection with the theft of prized pets Koji and Gustav after handing them into police.

Lady Gaga's dog walker Ryan Fischer was shot and wounded during the dognapping in Los Angeles, which took place in February 2021 as the star was out of the country.

James Howard Jackson, one of three men and two accomplices who allegedly participated in the violent robbery, pleaded no contest to one count of attempted murder in December 2022, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said, and was sentenced to 21 years in prison.

McBride pleaded no contest to receiving stolen property in connection with the theft, also in December. Now, according to a court filing, she is accusing Lady Gaga, whose real name is Stefani Germanotta, of breach of contract, fraud by false promise and fraud by misrepresentation for not paying her the $500,000 (£413,800) reward.

​In addition to the reward money, McBride is seeking no less than $1.5m (£1.25m) in damages, as well as unspecified general damages, having filed an eight-page complaint at Los Angeles County Superior Court.

Read more:
Man who shot Lady Gaga's dog walker sentenced to 21 years in jail
Lady Gaga offers $500,000 reward after dog walker shot and pets stolen

McBride claims she was entitled to the reward money after delivering the dogs to a Los Angeles police station two days after they were taken. The lawsuit alleges Lady Gaga never intended to pay the "no questions asked" reward money - instead, she was questioned by police about the return of the bulldogs.

As a result, McBride endured pain and suffering, mental anguish and loss of enjoyment of life, according to the lawsuit.

Without reward 'dogs would likely have ended up in a breeding mill'

Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Michele Hanisee said: "If Lady Gaga suffers a financial loss by paying that reward, she will qualify as a victim of crime under California law, and the people will be obligated by law to seek restitution in court for that loss from each and every defendant in the case."

Ms Hanisee said that if the star had not come forward publicly acknowledging the dogs were hers and offering a reward, "the dogs would likely have ended up in a breeding mill".

She noted that "McBride is still on formal probation" and "still under the jurisdiction of the court".

Sky News has contacted representatives for Lady Gaga for comment.