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—sealing a dog in a bag and setting it on fire.

The Case: On July 29 at approximately 12:30 a.m., officers responded to a report of a fire in northeast Baltimore. Firefighters extinguished a burning bag and found a small dog, believed to be a terrier-mix, inside. Authorities pronounced the dog dead at the scene and called animal control officers. Authorities believe an unknown suspect, or suspects, placed the dog inside the bag, set it on fire and then left the scene. Since the dog was wearing a red harness at the time of discovery, it’s likely he was a family pet.

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.

Emily Hovermale, Maryland state director for the HSUS said: “Anyone who would commit such a barbaric act of cruelty is a danger to society. We are hopeful this reward will bring forward information that helps find the person or persons responsible for this horrible and heartbreaking crime.”

The Baltimore Police Department is investigating, and anyone with information about the case is asked to call 410-396-2400.

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, visit our animal cruelty statistics page.

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