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Parents say their sons didn’t set dog afire

Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III said he’s confident police arrested “the right guys” in connection with the death of Phoenix, the Baltimore pit bull who was doused with gasoline and set on fire last month.

But the parents of the boys say their sons weren’t involved.

“They didn’t do it. I would put my life on the line that they didn’t do it,”  the boys’ father, Charles Johnson told WBAL-TV. “If you’re on fire or anybody else is on fire, you’re going to take off running. That’s probably what the dog (did). Who knows where it was set on fire at.”

“You know, 17-year-olds, they’re going to get into a little something. But they wouldn’t set a dog on fire. I think one of them is afraid of a dog,”  Johnson said.

Bealefeld said today that the pit bull may have been part of a dogfighting operation.

Police charged the two teenagers in connection with the crime, but unexplainedly canceled a news conference yesterday to announce the arrests, according to a Baltimore Sun article

“I understand there are still some concerns about some of the things that [prosecutors] are looking for us to do in continuing with the investigation, but I’m confident that we have the right guys based on all that I’ve heard,” Bealefeld said.

“We got some information in the early stages concerning possible identity of these guys, and then, based on a review of evidence from the scene, we were able to secure another witness who put us over the top,” Bealefeld said.

WBAL-TV identified the juveniles as Travis and Jermaine Johnson, who are twin brothers.


Comment from 2pugsinapod
Time June 10, 2009 at 9:07 am

The father “thinks one of them” is afraid of dogs? He doesn’t know if his own son is afraid of dogs? If he doesn’t know his children well enough to determine that, how on earth would he know whether his children are sociopaths?