Authorities investigating unusual animal cruelty case

Credit: Ryan Hillard/ KTVB

Authorities investigating unusual animal cruelty case

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by Justin Corr

Bio | Email | Follow: @JCorrKTVB

KTVB.COM

Posted on August 30, 2012 at 9:34 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 25 at 9:42 PM

BOISE -- Payette County Deputies are looking for a person, or people, who they say have been injuring and killing dogs on Bureau of Land Management land.

People who have found these animals say they are sickened and angered by what has happened.

Lyn Vernazza runs the Payette Partners Rescue Ranch near New Plymouth. She says she has taken in a number of abandoned animals found on the BLM land near the Payette and Canyon County line.

"She was found by a transportation worker with six pups. Four were frozen." Vernazza said.

However, the dog brought to her on Saturday is a special case.

Trooper, as Vernazza is calling him was found shot through the neck.

"The bullet went in here, and came out down here... It did nick his spinal cord, and [there is] a lot of nerve damage," Vernazza says. "When he gets up, he shakes, and sometimes that back leg gives out."

Deputy Steve Burgess with Payette County Sheriff's Office says, "It's somebody's dog that they cared about."

Deputy Burgess says what happened to Trooper, is part of a bigger problem. "I've gotten information that there's some gentlemen going around on Craig's List, getting free dogs, taking them out into the area, and using them as target practice."

Burgess says he has gotten reports of dogs shot in this area since spring of 2011. He is working with BLM officials to figure out who is responsible, so he does not have to take any more dogs, like Trooper, to Vernazza

Vernazza, says, "As long as there's a sparkle in his eye, he's going to get everything I got."

Trooper, unfortunately, probably will not make a full recovery, but Vernazza says she already has someone interested in adopting him.

Deputy Burgess wants anyone that might have information about these crimes to call the Sheriff's Office at 208-642-6006.  He says those responsible will face county and federal charges, since the animals were dumped on federal lands.

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