By day, Mary A. Fischer is a respected, award-winning journalist who covers the criminal justice system. At night, sometimes, she is also a dognapper—trading in her tailored suit for a sleek thief’s outfit, complete with black turtleneck and flashlight—as she commits misdemeanors in the name of love. More than once she has staked out a neighbor’s home, snuck quietly into their backyard, and jimmied a lock to rescue a very grateful dog that was being abused. It’s a risk every time, but for Fischer the danger of standing idly by while innocents suffer is greater still.
Her own painful experiences of loss and neglect have led her down both paths: covering the law and breaking it. When she was four, her mother was committed to a mental institution, and she and her sister were sent to a strict Catholic boarding school run by nuns who believed in discipline, not affection. In the absence of her adoring mother, love was something she had to work for, something she had to steal in bits and pieces.
Growing up, Fischer developed an acute sensitivity to injustice that has taken her on assignments around the world to visit people in prison who have been wrongly accused and convicted. Her best-known stories—the McMartin Preschool child sexual abuse case, Wayne Williams, the so-called Atlanta Child Murderer, and the 1993 Michael Jackson scandal—took a unique, unpopular stance only to be validated later on. Her motive in both journalism and dognapping is the same: to stand up for the underdog and defend those who can’t defend themselves, be they human or canine.
Stealing Love is a moving memoir of lost—and rediscovered—love and illustrates firsthand the power of the individual and the incredible bond between humans and dogs.
About Mary A. Fischer
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Published August 29, 2006
Biographies & Memoirs.