Shooting of dog near Aurora Lake being investigated

by MIKE LESKO | REPORTER Published:

Aurora -- The family of a 12-year-old Alaskan Husky dog shot and killed March 13 is offering a $500 reward for any information that leads to an arrest and conviction in the case.

The Aurora Police Department asks anyone with information regarding the incident to call the detective bureau at 330-562-8181 or anonymously on the Aurora Police Department's Tip Line at 330-995-3030.

Ryan Tongs said he let his dog, Dakota, out of his Aurora Hill Drive home at about 1 p.m., and the dog never returned. The dog's body was found in Aurora Lake with three bullets in the upper chest later that afternoon.

"I let Dakota outside to enjoy a break in the winter weather," said Tongs, who owned the dog along with his wife, Erin. He said the dog was wearing a collar that would normally have kept the dog in the yard.

"I knew the collar wasn't working, but Dakota never went out of the yard," he said. "I called him to come back in, but he didn't come. I started searching, and I found his body in the lake."

Aurora police were summoned at 3:35 p.m. Tongs told them he was not aware of anybody who had a problem with the dog.

The couple took the dog to the Aurora Veterinary Clinic, where it had been taken the last 10 years, for an autopsy. The clinic was able to retrieve three bullets and fragments from the dog's body. The bullets are being tested by Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

Because of the closeness of the incident to Liberty Park, Summit Metro Parks park rangers were notified.

"We are devastated by the loss of Dakota," Tongs said. "It's a terrible feeling. It's like losing a child."

Tongs said he and his wife have two sons, ages 5 and 3. "They don't know what happened," he said.

"It's nothing they need to know about. But I'd like somebody to come forward so I can find out why this happened."

Email: mlesko@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9400 ext. 4189

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