Case Snapshot
Case ID: 18770
Classification: Vehicular, Burning - Fire or Fireworks
Animal: dog (pit-bull)
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Saturday, Oct 22, 2011

County: Bollinger

Charges: Misdemeanor
Disposition: Alleged

Alleged: Levi Snider

Case Updates: 1 update(s) available

Deputies in Bollinger County are investigating a case of alleged animal cruelty.

Sheriff Leo McElrath says someone found the a pit bull on County Road 318 near Marble Hill.

McElrath says someone dragged the dog behind a vehicle, tied it to a pole, and set it on fire all while the dog was still alive.

The dog was in such bad shape, investigators almost couldn't identify it. When deputies went to investigate Saturday morning, they found the dog tied to a fence. The animal's entire left side had been burned, and mud and gravel was embedded in the right side, according to the incident report. The dog's right hind leg was also broken, and evidence of dragging was found on the road. Deputies buried the dog shortly after its discovery.

The Bollinger County Stray and Rescue Group in Zalma, Mo., asked the department to dig up the dog for an autopsy. The autopsy will determine the dog's sex, breed, color, age and cause of death. The project will pay for the autopsy.

McElrath says a man came into the department Saturday morning. He said he and his wife were driving around a saw a dog tied to a post, and something looked weird.

That's when deputies went to investigate.

"It made my deputies sick to even find this kind of thing," said McElrath. "It really upset all of us to think someone would treat a dog like that."

"I was shocked to hear that something of this magnitude happened in Bollinger County," said Marilyn Neville with the Bollinger County Stray Project. "I just still can't believe it, I can't believe it happened in this county."

Neville says there are a lot of possibilities as to what happened, none with a positive turn out.

"It was a violent way to get rid of the dog," said Neville. "It could be that it was some kids that were angry at whoever the pet owner was, it could have been an owner who was disgusted with the dog and just lost it."

"I hope its not associated with some kind of a dog fighting ring or something of that nature, a more sinister crime that what it appears to be," said McElrath.

"I'm just really concerned about the temperament of the human being that was capable of doing something this horrific to a living creature," said Neville. "Someone capable of doing that, it's going to probably happen again."

Neville says she worries about pets for the upcoming Halloween weekend.

"I think we all need to be very cautious of our pets this weekend and this week, this many not just be this week, I think we need to make sure that our pets are well, are kept at home, and that we do everything we can to protect our pets," said Neville.

"We just like to find out who did this and bring them to justice," said McElrath.

A Facebook group called "In memory if Liberty" has been formed in honor of the dog.

Again the Bollinger County Sheriff's Department says if you have any information to give them a call or submit a tip. We value any information that is provide and it will remain completely confidential. You may submit information anonymously.


Case Updates

Two Marble Hill men have been charged with misdemeanor offenses related to the death and disposal of a pit bull.

Levi Snider, 24, of Marble Hill is charged with animal abuse for having allegedly killed the dog under circumstances not allowed by law. Travis Reed, 28, also of Marble Hill, is charged with littering with the carcass for having improperly disposed of it by allegedly placing it upon premises that were not his own.

On Oct. 22, the Bollinger County Sheriff's Department received a report of a pit bull carcass being found in a field near CR318. Initial reports of the discovery described a dog being tortured, dragged by a truck, tied to a post and set on fire, possibly while alive.

According to a news release from the sheriff's department, Snider stated that he shot the dog because it had been aggressive toward him on his property and had interfered with his archery deer hunting. He denied any other maltreatment of the dog, according to the release.

The release said Reed stated that he heard the shots fired a week earlier and Snider approached him about getting rid of the carcass.

The carcass was exhumed and submitted to the Animal Health Diagnostics Center at Cornell University. However, final reports of the examination concluded that the cause of death could not be determined for reasons including decomposition of the remains. No bullet or bullet fragments were found in the remains. The examination showed no evidence of torture or mutilation to a live animal.
Source: semissourian.com - Feb 4, 2012
Update posted on Feb 4, 2012 - 6:09PM 

References

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