Dog rigged with explosives recovers; suspects at large
A woman claiming to be the owner of a Stockton dog severely injured when someone strapped explosives -- equal to a quarter stick of dynamite -- on his back and ignited it says she plans to seek justice.
Shukriyyah Albaaqee says the dog's name is Dexter and that he ran away Wednesday morning. Later that afternoon, a dog fitting Dexter's description was found in the same neighborhood with a large gash on its back.
Witnesses told police someone had strapped an M-80 firecracker to the dog's back and ignited it.
"I just want to get my animal back," Albaaqee told FOX40 in Sacramento. "It disgusts me what they did to him, and I will be pressing charges."
Albaaqee presented pictures that seemed to back up her claim of being the dog's owner. Authorities said they will try to validate her story.
The reward to help find those responsible continues to grow. Red Rover, a national nonprofit animal protection organization, offered $2,500 for information leading to an arrest and conviction, while a man from El Dorado Hills said he would give $5,000.
Stockton Animal Control had named the 2-year-old dachshund "Rocket."
"He's a sweet pea, a little angel," said Madison Fawn of Family Pet Hospital in Stockton, where the dog was taken after neighbors heard a loud boom. "He had a big, open wound on his neck. It was about 10 inches by 3 inches -- blood, you know all of that not nice stuff to see."
Stockton police said witnesses indicated that the suspects may be adults.
"When you think of fireworks, large firecracker explosions, you think of juveniles, little kids that are involved," Officer Joseph Silva told FOX40, expressing surprise that grown-ups may be involved.
Despite its injuries, all the dog wants to do is snuggle, those caring for him said.
"That's all he really wants right now, love, affection, kisses, hugs. He's been a trouper about it. He's been a total trouper through all this. Way better than most dogs would have done," Fawn said.
-- Mark Demsky, FOX40 Sacramento