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Reward Offered in Dog Rape and Murder Case in Thurston County, Washington

Editor's Note: As of April 1, 2016, the reward fund exceeds $17,000 thanks to generous support from HSUS donors across the U.S.

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 ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ raping and hanging a dog in Thurston County, Washington.

The Case: On March 21, a mountain biker discovered a pit bull-type dog hanging from a tree on the Department of Natural Resources’ property. The perpetrators asphyxiated the dog by hanging her from a branch with her feet barely touching the ground. Evidence suggested she was severely sexually assaulted while being restrained.

The Department of Natural Resources, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and HSUS are seeking information to find whoever is responsible for this atrocious crime.

Animal Cruelty: Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and residents 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.

Dan Paul, Washington state director for The HSUS said: “This is a truly horrific situation in all aspects. To think about the suffering this dog experienced in her final moments, as well as knowing there’s an individual or individuals in our state who would perpetrate this type of abuse, is sickening. We are hopeful this reward will bring someone forward with information about this despicable crime.”

The Investigators: Joint Animal Services, The Department of Natural Resources and The Federal Bureau of Investigation are investigating. Anyone with information about the case is asked to call officer Erika Johnson at 360-352-2510.

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 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 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

Donate now to support the work of our Animal Cruelty and Fighting campaign»