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Dead dog found dumped in Coventry had gunshot wound, police say

Updated: Mar 15

UPDATE: $5,000 Reward

Desmond's Army Animal Law Advocates is offering a $4,500. Army’s Legacy Animal Rescue And Sanctuary, Inc. has added 500.00, making the reward $5,000 for information leading to an arrest.

COVENTRY, CT (WFSB) | Mar. 10, 2024 | By Olivia Kalentek, Mike Cerullo and Olivia Schueller - Someone shot a dog and dumped its body in a plastic bin on the side of a road in Coventry, according to police.

Coventry police said they have been looking for surveillance video following the discovery on Saturday.

They said the bin was found on South Street near Route 6.

Authorities said the dog was a dark gray female pit bull weighing 50 and 55 pounds with cropped ears. The dog appeared to have recently had puppies.

“Once the dog had been secured from the scene, officers discovered that the dog had a gunshot wound to the chest area,” Coventry police said in a news release. It appeared as if the dog had been left on the side of the road for several days before it was found.

As police tried to figure out who shot and abandoned the dog, animal advocates said they were outraged.

“Animal cruelty keeps getting swept under the rug, and it’s just heartbreaking. To find another dog that has been violently killed is completely unacceptable, and the state has to start doing something,” said Zilla Cannamela, president and co-founder of Desmond’s Army Animal Law Advocates.

Desmond’s Army offered a $4,500 reward for information that leads to an arrest.

“The violence against the animals has to stop,” Cannamela said. “Advocates, rescuers, everyone is just at their wit’s end because nothing is being done, and there are no consequences for these people.”

Cannamela said Connecticut needs to rethink its animal cruelty laws and create stricter punishments for offenders.

“There has to be a mandatory minimum, something more than accelerated rehabilitation, something more than a slap on the wrist fine,” she said.

The case in Coventry was the latest in a string of animal cruelty investigations in the area.

Earlier this year, police arrested 43-year-old Genese Martinez. Martinez was accused of helping perform a c-section on a pregnant English bulldog back in June, despite not being a licensed veterinarian.

The dog died a short time later.

Police believed the illegal surgery happened in Mansfield.

Investigators have not linked the two cases.

“If you see something being done to an animal, if you see something that just doesn’t sit right with you, please call your animal control officer, please call the police,” Cannamela said.

Officials said they were looking for surveillance video and asked anyone with information to contact the Coventry police department at 860-742 – 7331. They said callers can remain anonymous.

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