THURSTON COUNTY, Wash. -- The reward is now up to $25,000 for information leading to the conviction of whoever sexually assaulted and killed a dog that an animal cruelty officer has named ‘Justice.’ The female pit bull was found by a mountain biker hanging from a tree near Summit Lake off Highway 8 last week.
"What we're seeing here is scratch marks from where the dog was struggling,” said Officer Erika Johnson who was the first investigator on scene. She says the dog’s feet were just barely touching the ground and it died of asphyxiation. "This makes me furious,” said Officer Johnson. She says The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) contacted her this morning and told her their members have been so upset by the case that they have donated an additional $12,000 bringing the total to $25,000.
The abuse is so heinous it’s outraged a veteran undercover investigator from Pasado’s Safe Haven who visited the scene to post reward flyers. She keeps thinking about the dog that thought she was going on a walk in the woods. “This kind of crime strikes a whole different cord in your soul. I can't even explain in words the anger and deep sadness this brings inside of me,” she said.
They’ve collected DNA samples to run at the crime lab in hopes there is a match to someone. "My guess is that they've probably had run-ins with the law before,” said Officer Johnson who added, "Just to think that this helpless dog went through so much at the hands of some monster. I think that anybody that's capable of committing a crime like this needs to be put behind bars.”
If you have any information on the suspect, contact Officer Johnson at (360) 352-2510. If you wish to remain anonymous, you can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.