Friday, August 8, 2008

Charges filed in puppy slaying


An Auburn woman accused of killing her neighbor's puppy is facing felony animal cruelty charges in the shooting.

Denise Leahy, 46, was charged Thursday with a single count of first-degree animal cruelty for the July 4 killing.

That afternoon, a neighbor of Leahy's returned home to find Taz, her 7-month-old bull mastiff, laying dead in her yard soaked in blood, according to court documents. She called police while her husband rushed the puppy to Sumner Veterinary Hospital, where a necropsy was completed.

Veterinarians determined the puppy had been killed by a small caliber bullet, which had blown through its torso. That discovery caused Auburn police to respond to the home in the 5200 block of 55th Street Southeast.

Officers spoke with a neighbor who described hearing a loud explosion earlier that day. He said he thought little of it – it was Independence Day – until he saw Taz running frantically in the large yard where he was fenced in. Even then, though, he told officers he assumed the puppy was simply bothered by the fireworks.

According to police reports, Leahy later told a friend that she'd shot the puppy because it was "barking and being annoying." That friend later relayed that conversation to police.

Leahy was arrested July 31 at her home and briefly jailed. She is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 20.
P-I reporter Levi Pulkkinen ca

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