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Saturday, Sep 29, 2012County: El Paso
Suspect(s) Unknown - We need your help!
A retired couple in eastern Colorado Springs is offering a $1,000 reward for information after their 4-year-old Chihuahua was apparently fatally shot Saturday morning.
Authorities are investigating what killed the dog, but DeBoer is convinced the animal was shot to death.
George DeBoer, 68, said he let the dog, Chico, into their backyard just after 8 a.m. Saturday. The man and his wife Diana DeBoer ate breakfast and went to check on the pooch when they noticed it wasn't there.
"We called him and we couldn't find him," George DeBoer said. "So, we rang the doorbell, because he always answers the doorbell."
The dog still didn't come. George DeBoer investigated further and said he found the dog laying outside the yard about 10 feet from a small opening in the fence. Chico was still warm, but had what appeared top be a .22 caliber bullet hole going right through the dog's torso, he said.
"It's senseless," George DeBoer said. "We just want to know why. Just why?"
The man said Chico had to have been "coaxed out" of the yard because the dog never tried to leave.
Police and investigators from the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region were called to 4666 Purcell Drive shortly after 10 a.m. The Humane Society will perform a necropsy on the dog to determine how it died. Humane Society spokeswoman Gretchen Pressley said a bullet, or pellet was not found near Chico's body.
Anyone with information that could help with the investigation is asked to call the Humane Society at 473-1741.
"No one seems to have seen or heard anything," Pressley said. "We really need a witness to come forward in order to proceed."
George DeBoer said he has talked with several neighbors in the area since his dog's death. He warns people who live near Sand Creek to keep an eye on their pets, saying, "Everybody's got two dogs and two kids in the area. Who's to say it ain't going to happen again?"
The DeBoer's got Chico when he was just 6 months old. Diana DeBoer was struggling with breast cancer and George DeBoer had prostate cancer at the time. George DeBoer said the dog meant a lot to the couple because it helped them fight through their diseases.
When asked whether neighbors had ever complained about Chico barking, George DeBoer said, "He never barks." Pressley said investigators interviewed neighbors and nobody indicated the dog had ever been a nuisance.
The closest thing that could be found to a witness was a resident across Sand Creek, George DeBoer said.
"She said she heard her dogs barking at something," he said. "Then she heard a 'yip, yip' and that was the end of it."
- Colorado Springs Gazette - Oct 1, 2012
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