WJTV News Channel 12 - Burned Arcadia dog: No arrest, $45,000 in donations

Burned Arcadia dog: No arrest, $45,000 in donations

Posted: Updated:
ARCADIA, FL (WFLA) -

It's a story that outraged News Channel 8 viewers and animal lovers around the world. More than one thousand of you commented on the WFLA Facebook page asking for answers.

First came the shocking sight of the dog, more than half of her body was burned.

Doctors at Tampa's BluePearl Veterinary performed extensive treatments on the tough little survivor, who they now call "Hope".

Then we showed you the conditions in which she lived: a make-shift shed where police say she was tied down when the flames covered her body.

On March 20, someone in Arcadia doused the helpless 1-year-old dog with kerosene and then set her on fire. Investigators think the dog's owner may be responsible for the horrific act.

It was enough to outrage any animal lover, and News Channel 8 wanted to know why it was taking so long to file charges.

“The case came in as a non-arrest so there’s no hurry as far as time-wise, legally,” said Cliff Ramey with the State Attorney’s Office in DeSoto County.

Friday marked two weeks that investigators had worked the case. The original report said the owner of the dog, Larry Wallace, was questioned and released.

“We have interviewed witnesses and are waiting on lab results to come back, but we can’t make a filing decision until all the paperwork comes in,” Ramey said.

The Arcadia Police Department initially responded to the case.

Now the investigation includes the State Fire Marshal, Department of Children and Families and the State Attorney’s Office.

Tests on accelerant and burn debris take time, investigators said, and may be sitting in line behind other cases.

“DNA reports sometimes take six months,” Ramey said. “This particular report, I believe, will be in within a month but I can’t say for sure because I don’t work for that agency,” he added.

The State Attorney's Office and the Arcadia Police Department have received calls about the dog from all across the United States and even Russia, they said.

As far as the dog's condition, she remains in ICU at Bluepearl Veterinary Partners in Tampa.

Monies donated for her care surpass $45,000.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.

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