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Reward Offered in Puppy Sexual Abuse Case in Crawford County, Michigan

The Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for sexually abusing a puppy near Grayling, Michigan.

The Case: News reports give the following account: On March 12, John and Terri Lasby let their 14-week-old Maltese Shih Tzu mix puppy, Jake, out into their backyard, and later realized that he had disappeared. Hours later, Jake returned to their backyard. He was hiding under a shrub, injured, shaking and covered in debris. When they took the puppy inside to bathe him, he refused to lift his tail and began crying and yelping in pain. A veterinary examination determined Jake was a victim of sexual assault.

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 other crimes, including narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.

Jill Fritz, Michigan senior state director for The HSUS, said: “Anyone who would deliberately abuse this sweet little dog like that is a danger to the community at large. We are hopeful that this reward will bring forward anyone with information and help investigators find the person responsible for this heinous crime.”

The Investigators: The Crawford County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the case. Anyone with information is asked to contact central dispatch at 989-348-6341.

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.

The National Sheriffs’ Association and The HSUS recently launched ICE BlackBox, a free smartphone tool, to allow users to record video of illegal animal cruelty and share it securely with law enforcement for possible investigation and prosecution. 

The HSUS recently doubled its standard cruelty reward from $2,500 to $5,000 thanks to a generous donation from an HSUS board member. To see information on statistics, trends, laws and animal cruelty categories, click here.   

Media Contact: Samantha Miller: 301-258-1466; smiller@humanesociety.org  


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