Reward for information on dog drowning raised to $5K

ROPE: Duct tape holds a rope secure around a large rock. The rope was tied around the neck of a dog that was dumped in a river. Guam Animals In Need is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the culprits. Contributed photo

Guam Animals In Need has increased the reward for information leading to the arrest of the person or people responsible for the drowning of a dog in Talofofo.

The dog, possibly an adult terrier-mix weighing 10-15 pounds with tan fur, was tied to a rock using rope and duct tape before being drowned in a river, according to GAIN. The reward for information leading to the arrest of the dog’s killer is raised to $3,000.

On Sunday, Sept. 20, a jogger spotted the body of a drowned dog tied to a rock, floating near the bridge immediately north of Jeff’s Pirate Cove on Route 4 in Talofofo.

The Guam Police Department began its investigation, and the Department of Agriculture and GAIN recovered the body.

“We are grateful for the response. Within an hour of being contacted in the middle of the night, the Department of Ag began coordinating personnel, and were ready to respond by morning,” said Cyrus Luhr, GAIN board president.

When pulling the body from the water, personnel were also able to recover the rock used to weigh the dog down in the water.

“This was intentional. The rope around the neck was knotted tightly, and duct-tape was used to permanently secure the rope to a rock,” Luhr said.

The body was transported by GAIN to the animal shelter in Yigo, where it was stored and examined by Dr. Thomas Pool, the Guam Territorial Veterinarian, this week, the press release stated.

Due to the advanced state of decomposition, the gender and precise age of the dog could not be determined. However, Dr. Pool estimates the drowning occurred within the last few weeks, and that the dog was likely an adult terrier-mix weighing 10-15 pounds with tan fur.

“An act like this is both heartbreaking and profoundly worrisome for our community. Someone who is capable of torturing and killing a small, innocent dog like this is likely capable of anything,"  said Dr. Thomas Pool, Guam Territorial Veterinarian.

"According to the FBI, one of the most strongly correlated traits of serial killers is a history of torturing animals. Also, Conduct Disorders, like child abuse and spouse beating, are similarly strongly correlated with animal abuse. We can only pray that a witness will come forward." 

Numerous studies demonstrate a direct link between animal abuse and domestic violence, child abuse, and elder abuse, GAIN states. Animal abuse was found in 88% of homes in which physical child abuse was being investigated. 89% of women who had companion animals during an abusive relationship reported that their animals were threatened, harmed, or killed by their abusive partner.

The reward, originally set at $2,000, was increased with the help of anonymous donors.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Guam Crime Stoppers at 477-HELP (4357) or guam.crimestoppersweb.com.

“If you have any information, please share it and help us protect lives. The killer who did this is likely to hurt more animals or humans,” Luhr said.

“GPD will continue to work alongside GAIN in bringing closure to this case. Anyone with Information can submit a tip online anonymously to the Guam crime Stoppers at guam.crimestoppersweb.com,” said Sgt. Paul Tapao of the Guam Police Department.

GAIN continues to advocate for Bill 185-35, the PAWS Act (also known as Pugua's Law), which is currently being reviewed by the Office of the Attorney General of Guam. Once adopted, the measure will modernize animal cruelty laws in Guam.

GAIN is also awaiting developments in the Guam Police Department’s investigation into Walter’s killing, a neighborhood pet whose throat was slashed in late July.

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