An Alabama mail carrier is accused of feeding a dog meatballs laced with nails.
U.S. Postal Service employee Susanna Burhans, 47, was arrested and charged Thursday with aggravated animal cruelty, AL.com reports.
Investigators believe Burhans fed meatballs with nails to at least one dog around the city of New Hope, about 20 miles southeast of Huntsville. Police are looking at whether other dogs may have been victimized, said Capt. Mike Salomonsky of the Madison County Sheriff’s Office.
“Right now, we know for sure there’s one dog,” Salomonsky told AL.com. “But there’s another neighbor that had a complaint, so there might be two or more.”
Ed Glover, who lives on Burhans’ delivery route, told WHNT-TV that he found a meatball filled with nails near his mailbox. Afraid that Burhans might have fed the apparent treat to his dog, Burhans took the pet to a veterinary center, where X-rays showed nails in the dog’s stomach, Glover told the television station.
Burhans’ arrest comes after a complaint was made two weeks ago, Salomonsky said. The sheriff’s office and the Postal Service conducted a joint investigation.
Burhans was released from jail after posting $2,500 bail. She faces up to a decade in prison if convicted of the felony charge.
The allegations against Burhans are not the first time mail carriers have been accused of violence toward dogs.
Last year, a Houston couple complained that a mail carrier had pepper-sprayed their three dogs even though the animals were behind a gate.
A South Carolina man also complained in 2015 when a mail carrier peppered-sprayed his dachshund, although in that case the postal service found the carrier’s actions justified for safety reasons.
In March, a northern Minnesota mailman was charged with bestiality after allegedly breaking into a garage and having sexual contact with a dog.
Photo: Madison County Jail