Authorities made the horrifying discovery of a dog that had been chained and burned, possibly to death, earlier this month. On Friday, South Carolina officials said that three children have been arrested in connection with the gruesome incident, as reported by The Post and Courier.
All three children, two 12-year-olds and a 13-year-old, were charged with a felony count of animal cruelty. In addition to this, they face charges of ill treatment of animals and unlawful burning.
Lt. Rita Avila Zelinsky, a sheriff’s spokeswoman, said that the trio were arrested on Friday morning. They are currently being held in the juvenile annex at the Al Detention Center in North Charleston.
Authorities were able to track down the children from tips they received while investigating the area.
It’s unclear if the dog was dead before it was set on fire, but a necropsy performed at the University of Georgia revealed that the dog had been burned, choked, and possibly cut.
Zelinsky said there is no “real single cause of death at this point.”
The incident occurred on April 11. Authorities responded to call about a bush burning, along with the dog, at a property off U.S. Highway 17. A resident nearby told police about six children, between the ages of 12 and 16, walking away from the scene.
It was determined later on that the dog had been wrapped in a chain, dragged down the road, and lit on fire.
Director of Anti-Cruelty and Outreach for the Charleston Animal Society Aldwin Roman gave a statement saying that the investigation is still underway. He also spoke of the successful cooperation between the animal society and the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office. Both agencies are working to investigate the incident and bring to justice those who carried out this horrific crime.
A reward of at least $6,000 is offered for information that will lead to the capture and conviction of those responsible for the dog’s death.