UAN Increases Reward to Catch Philadelphia Dog Killers

Witnesses needed to identify four teenagers who burned a dog to death

SACRAMENTO, CA (September 11, 2008) – United Animal Nations (UAN) today pledged a $2,500 reward to anyone who comes forward with information leading to the arrest and indictment of the person(s) who led a dog to the commuter rail tracks near Front Street and Tabor Road in the Olney section of Philadelphia, wrapped it in a towel, doused it with lighter fluid and set it on fire on Thursday, September 4.

“Sadly, in cases of violence toward animals, people are reluctant to come forward without a financial incentive,” said UAN President and CEO Nicole Forsyth. “We hope that the reward will encourage someone to do the right thing and help local law enforcement catch whoever committed this senseless act of cruelty.”

A witness called the Pennsylvania Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ hotline to report seeing four teenagers with the dog. Officers arrived a short time later to find the pit bull dead and badly burned. The Pennsylvania SPCA forensic veterinarian is currently examining the body, and that of a pit bull found dead about 50 yards away, to determine if the cases may be connected.

UAN’s $2,500 pledge brings the total reward being offered in this case to $13,500.

Anyone with information in this case should call the Pennsylvania SPCA at (866) 601-7722 or e-mail cruelty@pspca.org

“Given that research shows that people who abuse animals are more likely to be violent toward humans, our society can no longer take animal cruelty cases lightly,” Forsyth said. “It is especially troubling that this case allegedly involves teenagers. Finding the individuals who burned this dog could help them get the psychological help they desperately need.”

UAN is offering this reward through its Zig Zag Memorial Reward Fund , designed to encourage witnesses to step forward with information about animal cruelty crimes and to advocate the need for harsher punishments in such cases.

The Zig Zag Memorial Reward is named for a Los Angeles dog who was burned, beaten and tortured for hours before dying, and whose assailants were apprehended but received scant punishment. In 2007, UAN launched the Humane Education Ambassador Reader program, a community-based literacy program to strike at the roots of cruelty by helping children develop empathy for animals through stories and discussion.

United Animal Nations (UAN) is North America ’s leading provider of emergency animal sheltering and disaster relief services and a key advocate for the critical needs of animals. Learn more at www.uan.org.