Police in new York hope a surveillance video will help them find three men who tossed a bag containing a dog and four puppies in a secluded industrial area and then set it on fire.
Just after midnight on Monday, a van stopped on 91st Street near Ditmas Avenue in Canarsie, police said. Three men got out and tossed a large black garbage bag near a trash bin.
Four dogs were later found inside the bag, WABC reported.
“I couldn’t stand to look at it. I don’t even like to talk about it. It was a horrible thing to do to a dog,” said Sammy Omar, a beverage distributor who found the remains. “It was torture. The puppies were all burned up.”
Investigators are not sure if the dog were alive or dead when the bag was dumped and set on fire.
An ASPCA spokesperson says the dogs were taken to Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in Manhattan for a necropsy.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 7th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, burned, canarsie, ditmas avenue, dogs, dumped, fire, investigation, necropsy, new yorik, pets, police, puppies, surveillance, trash bag, video
As often as we bring you stories of police officers shooting dogs, it’s only right that we pass along news of cops who go out of their way to help one.
Seattle police officer Eric Michl went pretty far out of his way – helping to find a temporary home for the dog of a man he arrested, and driving on his day off from Seattle to Vancouver to place the dog with a foster family.
Last month, Michl pulled over a van that had changed lanes without signaling and arrested the driver, Juan Crespo, on a charge of driving under the influence. Crespo, the officer learned, also had a warrant from San Diego, where he was wanted for burglary. Also in the van was Crespo’s dog — a German shepherd named Liana — who had commited no offense.
Michl loaded her into the back of his police car and, as Crespo was being booked, drove her to the Seattle Animal Shelter.
On the way, Liana stuck her nose through the partition and licked his ear.
San Diego, it turned out, wanted Crespo extradited, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Between that attempt, which Crespo is fighting, and the local charges, it looked like it would be a while before his court cases came to a conclusion — far longer than the amount of time the Seattle Animal Shelter keeps unclaimed dogs.
That weighed on Michl. He checked with the shelter to see if it could hold Liana for the duration of Crespo’s court case. It couldn’t. That’s when Michl contacted Crespo’s defense attorney. Highly irregular. And highly cool.
“I just felt really bad that this dog and her owner would have to be separated,” Michl said. ” … Separating her from her owner would be an injustice. It wouldn’t be fair for the dog and for him.”
Working with the defense attorney, Megan Giske, Michl tried to locate someone from Crespo’s family to foster Liana, but they couldn’t find an appropriate home.
That’s when Michl turned to Facebook.
“She deserves a chance to live a full and happy life,” he wrote in a post. “If you know of anyone interested, please get a hold of me. I can provide details of her evaluation by the kennel manager.”
This past weekend, a friend of the suspect’s sister agreed to take Liana until Crespo is released.
The Seattle Animal Shelter gave Liana vaccinations and installed a microchip, waiving any fees.
He met the new foster parents at the Vancouver police station, and he reports that the friend, her two children and Liana all appeared happy with the new arrangement.
What got into Michl? And why can’t more police officers show canines that kind of compassion? We can’t answer the second question, but the Post-Intelligencer article provides some insight into the first.
In an interview, Michl spoke of his dog, Tommy, who died last last April. When Michl had to leave his son alone for nighttime patrols, Tommy, a black Lab, would sleep on his bed. Tommy died at age 8 of cancer, but the memory of him is still strong.
“Your dogs never leave you, no matter what,” Michl said.
Maybe it was that memory, or the lick from Liana while she was in the backseat. Perhaps even Crespo entered into the equation as well. Maybe, while Michl went far beyond the call of duty, it was just smart police work.
“I’m hoping once he’s out of jail he’ll remember that someone cared enough to do this for him and his dog.”
(Photos: Courtesy of Eric Michl, via Seattle Post-Intelligencer)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 6th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal shelter, animals, arrest, attorney, beyond, burglary, call of duty, compassion, courts, dog, dogs, drunk driving, duty, eric michl, extradition, facebook, family, foster, german shepherd, good cop, juan crespo, law enforcement, liana, officer, pets, police, seattle, shelter, suspect, vancouver
A one-eyed Pekingese who ran off from his home nearly two years ago was reunited with his family in Arizona this week — after running out of another home and into the side of a police car.
Buddy had been missing since May 2011 when, during a monsoon, a gate flew open and he darted off the property of his owner, Jessica Rowe of Mesa.
Rowe searched, but was unable to find the small black and white dog.
On Friday — 22 months later — Buddy ran out the door of a home in Phoenix and into the street, AZFamily reported.
“That’s when I heard this really horrible sound as if a large stone or some object hit the driver side of my patrol vehicle, looked out the rear view and saw the dog down on the road,” Phoenix police officer Don Martin said.
Martin and another officer wrapped up the dog and took him to a vet, where a microchip was discovered, showing the dog was owned by Rowe.
Police called her and she reunited with Buddy Monday.
Martin said a citizen found Buddy about a week ago and had been caring for him up until his run in with the police cruiser. It’s unclear where Buddy had been before that.
“… We all like being police officers, because of moments like this,” Martin said as he watched dog and owner reconnect. ” … This is what you live for.”
Officer Martin also paid the dog’s vet bill.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 5th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, arizona, buddy, car, dog, dogs, don martin, found, hit, jessica rowe, lost, mesa, microchip, officer, one-eyed, pekingese, pets, phoenix, police, returned, reunion, vet
“It was bad people who killed them,” 5-year-old Ethan Stalcup said after the bodies of his family’s two dogs were found, apparently killed with an axe.
“I don’t understand why anybody would do this,” his mother, Rose Stalcup, said in an interview. “It really hurts to know that we live in a world where people can be this cruel.”
Her husband, J.P. Stalcup, wondered what the killers might do next: “What happens if, you know, they do that a couple more times and all of the sudden they’re not happy with – it’s not giving them as much jollies as it was the first couple times …”
That was before Japheth (J.P.) Daniel Stalcup admitted to police that it was he who killed his dogs — because, he said, he couldn’t afford to take care of them.
Now, as Stalcup awaits trial on charges of aggravated animal abuse, KATU – the station that aired the earlier interviews with the family — reports Stalcup has another dog, despite a judge’s order prohibiting it.
One of the conditions Stalcup agreed to in order to be free from jail until the trial was ”no possession or living with any animals.”
Stalcup, of Eagle Creek, Oregon, initially reported his dogs — Duke, a black Lab, and Buddy, a Lab-blue heeler mix — missing last November. Two days later he reported to police that he had found their bodies, about 100 yards from the house. Stalcup told investigators the dogs appeared to have been hit with an axe several times. One of the dogs was tossed from a cliff, deputies said.
As the police investigation progressed, Stalcup eventually admitted to killing the dogs. His trial date is March 25.
Acting on a tip from a viewer, KATU visited his home on Monday, confirming the family had a new puppy.
J.P. Stalcup told a reporter that his lawyer had cleared it with a judge for him to have pets at home, but prosecutors were unaware of any such permission being granted.
(Photo: The Stalcup’s new puppy (at top) and one of their previous dogs, Duke / KATU)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 27th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, ax, axe, buddy, charges, condition, dogs, duke, eagle creek, heeler, investigation, jail, japheth stalcup, jp stalcup, judge, katu, killed, lab, news, no pets, order, oregon, pets, police, trial
A white husky was found tagged with black spray paint in Sioux City, South Dakota, over the weekend.
Tabitha Taylor told police she found her dog Blaze covered with graffiti Sunday morning, according to the Sioux City Journal
“I can’t believe people would actually do that to somebody’s dog,” she said. “That just baffles my mind.”
The dog was sprayed on his head and back, sometime after he got loose. Blaze, in addition to the graffiti, was limping when he returned home, Taylor said.
Police are investigating and said whoever painted the dog could face charges. They ask anyone with information to call 402-494-7555.
The incident happened a week after a city security camera captured two people spraying gang graffiti on a building on B Street. The building had been tagged at least 10 times previously.
Taylor said her family spent four hours scrubbing the paint off with mayonnaise, olive oil and fish oil. Blaze belongs to her 4-year-old son, she said.
“Our dog is the cutest dog ever. He’s nice to everybody. He’s never mean,” Taylor said.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 26th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, blaze, cruelty to animals, dogs, gangs, graffiti, husky, pets, police, sioux city, south dakota, spray paint, tagged, tags
The canine nose got a vote of confidence Tuesday from the U.S. Supreme Court.
The unanimous decision stemmed from a case in Florida in which defense attorneys questioned a drug-sniffing dog’s credentials and reliability, and whether his alert was just cause to search a truck police had stopped.
The court ruled that, in the case of trained and certified dogs, it is — or as Justice Elena Kagan put it: “The sniff is up to snuff.”
Kagan said a dog’s “satisfactory performance” in a certification or training program provided sufficient reason for an officer to trust its alert, even though errors “may abound” when dogs get put to the test in the field.
The justices said that training records had established the reliability of Aldo, a German shepherd, in sniffing out contraband, and that Florida’s Supreme Court erred in suppressing evidence he found in Clayton Harris’ pickup truck — namely, methamphetamine ingredients.
The ruling, Reuters reports, gives law enforcement greater authority to use dogs to uncover illegal drugs.
“The question – similar to every inquiry into probable cause – is whether all the facts surrounding a dog’s alert, viewed through the lens of common sense, would make a reasonably prudent person think that a search would reveal contraband or evidence of a crime,” Kagan wrote for the court. “A sniff is up to snuff when it meets that test.”
The Harris case is one of two the court is considering about the validity of evidence obtained by drug-sniffing dogs. The second — which the high court has heard, but not decided — involves a police dog named Franky, who alerted while standing on a home’s doorstep, prompting a search that led to the discovery of marijuana growing inside.
In the case decided Tuesday, defense lawyers for Harris challenged the search by Aldo, a police dog in Liberty County, Florida. The officer handling Aldo — because Harris appeared nervous and declined to approve a search of his vehicle — allowed the dog a “free air sniff.”
Based in part on Aldo’s reaction, a full search was conducted.
Harris’ lawyers challenged the search, questioning Aldo’s certification and whether he was reliable in sniffing out drugs.
Florida’s Supreme Court concluded that the state had not sufficiently established how well-trained Aldo was, and it ruled the evidence of the methamphetamine ingredients should not have been admitted.
Kagan wrote that the officer reasonably believed there was contraband inside the truck based on Aldo’s training, and that defense attorneys failed to show that Aldo was unreliable.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 20th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: aldo, animals, certification, detecting, dogs, drug, florida, harris, ingredients, justice elena kagan, K-9, k9, law enforcement, liberty county, methamphetamine, nose, pets, police, reliability, ruling, scent, search, sniffing, supreme court, training, vehicle
A rat terrier who wandered from his home and ended up on a busy Texas highway was rescued by a police officer in La Porte, who halted traffic and carried the dog to safety.
Cujo, whose owners say he suffers from a bad hip, was spotted Monday by officer Kyle Jones on Spencer Highway, limping along in a lane of moving traffic.
Jones spun his car around and blocked traffic on the busy highway, called to the dog, then walked over to him, debating whether he should pick him up.
“You know how Chihuahuas are,” Jones told KHOU. “You’re not really sure if you can trust ‘em or not. But he kind of looked at me and said, ‘Man, I’m glad you’re here.’ He let me pick him right up. Stuck him in the back seat of the patrol car.”
Jones turned Cujo over to an animal control officer who, thanks to the ID tag on the dog’s collar, was able to return him to his family.
The Zapalac family had been searching for Cujo.
“We spent the whole morning, about an hour, looking for him,” Jeremy Zapalac said. “It started pouring down rain. And he hates water.”
Zapalac described Cujo as “a Napoleon-type of dog. He’s very short, but with a very big ego.”
Posted by jwoestendiek February 15th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animal control, animals, cujo. spencer highway, dog, dogs, highway, kyle jones, la porte, law enforcement, officer, pets, police, ran away, rat terrier, rescues, returned, saves, texas, zapala
A moonlighting New Orleans cop who brought his police K-9 to a private security job broke no law, his lawyer argued Friday– and commited no malfeasance any more serious than failing to shine his shoes.
The dog, named Phantom, fell down an elevator shaft and to his death while he and Sgt. Randy Lewis were working a private security detail at a closed hospital building.
Lewis was not charged with animal cruelty, but with malfeasance.
Judge Ben Willard, after hearing closing arguments in the case Friday, delayed any verdict for another week. Lewis faces five years in prison and a $5,000 fine if found guilty, Nola.com reported
Lewis, a former supervisor in the department’s K-9 unit, took Phantom to the shuttered Charity Hospital in May 2009, where he had been hired to clear vagrants from the property. The dog fell from the 17th floor through a partially open elevator door.
Lewis took Phantom to the job without police department approval, and had signed forms saying no police equipment or animals would be used in the private job.
The dog’s body was not found until the next day, when the private company that hired him had the elevator drained. Lewis then had the dog cremated, before a necropsy could be performed.
Lewis, in his initial reports about the incident, said he was training the dog, and didn’t mention he was getting paid privately for his services.
His attorney, Eric Hessler, argued that Lewis had been working a private job and training his police dog at the same time.
Hessler likened the court proceedings to an officer being prosecuted for failing to shine his shoes.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 5th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, cop, death, died, dogs, elevator, fell, job, k9, law enforcement, malfeasance, moonlighting, new orleans, pets, phantom, police, private, randy lewis, security, shaft, trial
The dog was shot when deputies responding to a burglary call went to the wrong address.
Deputy Wilfred Europe III has been reassigned to administrative duties, according to the Denver Post.
CBS 4 in Denver reported last week that it was the second time Europe had shot a dog during his five years with the sheriff’s office. The first shooting wasn’t fatal.
In a news conference Friday, Adams County Sheriff Doug Darr said the case is still under investigation, but that certain details “need to be set straight.”
According to Darr, two deputies were dispatched to a burglar alarm call Monday at Thoutt Bros. Concrete at 5384 Tennyson St. The address of the business wasn’t clearly marked and, upon seeing an open door at 5460 Tennyson Street they approached it.
When the occupant of the building opened the door, Ziggy, his 8-year-old blue heeler/border collie mix, ran outside.
Darr said Ziggy was “barking and growling” and that the deputy retreated about 25 feet before kicking him. Ziggy continued toward the deputy, who fired two shots, one of which hit and killed the dog.
Jeff Fisher, the dog’s owner, says the officers told him to calm down when he reacted to the dog’s shooting, and that he could “get another dog.” Darr confirmed the deputy made those comments.
Fisher is being represented by an attorney from the Animal Law Center, Jay Swearingen, who says the sheriff’s account differs from that of Fisher. Fisher says Ziggy was running away from the deputy, not charging toward him, when he was shot, and that three shots were fired.
Fisher said he asked the officers after Ziggy was shot why they couldn’t have used a taser, and was told “It is what it is.”
Many citizens have expressed outrage over the shooting — much of it on the sheriff department’s own Facebook page:
“We’re really pleased that the public is concerned,” Swearingen said. “Our client can’t get his dog back, but what happened with Ziggy can … prevent this from occurring again to another family with their dog.”
Posted by jwoestendiek January 21st, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adams county, alarm, animals, burglary, colorado, deputies, deputy, dogs, doug darr, get another one, it is what it is, jeff fisher, killed, law enforcement, pets, police, reassigned, reassignment, sheriff, shootings, shot, Wilfred Europe, wrong address, ziggy
David Stoddard was indicted Thursday for aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary in connection with a home invasion in Barberton on Oct. 6.
Three masked men burst into a house, robbed the occupants and shot and killed the family’s pit bull mix after it bit one of the intruders on the arm, according to News Channel 5.
Police investigating the crime swabbed the inside of the deceased dog’s mouth in hopes of finding DNA evidence that would lead to the bitten suspect.
On Dec. 5, Barberton police learned the sample had led to a potential match to Stoddard and began trying to find him — both at his home and through his attorney, who said Stoddard would turn himself in.
That didn’t happen, and police did not issue a warrant for Stoddard’s arrest, in part because they were hoping to confirm the DNA results first with a second test.
On Jan. 6, Stoddard allegedly broke into an Akron home and shot and killed 16-year-old Anna Karam, who was 4-months pregnant.
Stoddard is being held in the Summit County Jail. He’s facing multiple charges, including aggravated murder in connection with the Akron killing.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 18th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: akron, animals, arrest, barberton, burglary, crime, david stoddard, dna, dogs, forensics, girl, home invasion, investigation, killed, law enforcement, mix, murder, pets, pit bull, pitbull, police, pregnant, robbery, shot