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March 2, 2012

The HSUS and Michigan Humane Society Offer Reward in Detroit Dog Shooting

Michigan Humane Society

The Humane Society of the United States and the Michigan Humane Society are offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the shooting and abandonment of a dog on a highway near Detroit, Mich. If law enforcement officials determine that the dog sustained dogfighting injuries and charge the perpetrator accordingly—leading to a dogfighting conviction—the reward for information could double.

The Case: News reports give the following account: On Feb. 26, 2012, good Samaritan Tom Salwoski was driving on the John Lodge Freeway in Southfield, when he spotted a large, brown-and-white dog on the side of the road. He pulled over and turned on his hazard flashers to protect the dog, who was apparently injured, from traffic. A volunteer with Almost Home, an animal rescue organization in Southfield, also happened by the scene and took the dog to a veterinarian. Upon examination, the dog was found to have been shot through the trachea, and had deep cuts all over his body that authorities believe are the result of dog fighting. The dog, now named “Freeway Fred,” is recovering from surgery in stable condition and is being cared for by Almost Home.

Animal Cruelty: Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and the community in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community.  The connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented.  Studies show a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.

“Michigan’s strong laws against cruelty and animal fighting demonstrate our citizens’ disdain for vicious acts like this one,” said Jill Fritz, Michigan state director for The Humane Society of the United States. “We are hopeful that this reward will help persuade anyone with information about who inflicted such terrible injuries on this dog to come forward.”

“This heinous act of cruelty is completely disheartening and it is imperative that we bring those responsible to justice,” said Debby MacDonald, senior cruelty investigator with the Michigan Humane Society.
The Investigators: Southfield Animal Control is investigating the case. Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Southfield animal assistance hotline at 248-796-5410.

Resources: The HSUS Animal Cruelty Campaign raises public awareness and educates communities about the connection between animal cruelty and human violence while providing a variety of resources to law enforcement agencies, social work professionals, educators, legislators and families. The HSUS offers rewards in animal cruelty cases across the country and works to strengthen laws against animal cruelty. To see information on statistics, trends, laws and animal cruelty categories, go to humanesociety.org.

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Media Contact: Jordan Crump: 301-548-7793; jcrump@humanesociety.org

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