Man Who Reportedly Set Dog On Fire Hospitalized For Gunshot Wounds

| by Phyllis M Daugherty

Adell Ziegler, 21, one of two men who was arrested in November 2012 for setting a Jack Russell Terrier puppy on fire, was hospitalized in Buffalo, New York, after being shot Monday on Humboldt Parkway.

Ziegler was shot in the groin and buttocks at approximately 9:10 a.m. in the 600 block of Humboldt, according to Buffalo Police. He was taken to Erie County Medical Center for treatment and was listed in stable condition.

Adell Ziegler and Diondre L. Brown, were both arrested on Nov. 13, 2012, for dousing a Jack Russell puppy -- later named Phoenix -- with lighter fluid and setting him on fire on October 29. Phoenix was reportedly abused in the weeks before the burning

The dog suffered third-degree burns over 30 percent of his body, according to; but Phoenix recovered and was adopted by a member of the veterinary staff at the Buffalo Small Animal Hospital, where he was treated.

On July 2, 2013, State Supreme Court Justice Russell P. Buscaglia imposed the maximum-allowable one-year prison term for Ziegler on the charge of aggravated animal cruelty under the state’s Agriculture and Marketing Law. The judge added a year in prison for an outstanding warrant for violation of parole on a prior charge and also ordered Ziegler to stay away from animals for the next seven years.

In addressing Ziegler’s cruelty to Phoenix, Judge Ziegler stated, “There’s been language describing it as appalling--as gruesome--and I don’t disagree with any of that.”

Buscaglia added that he considered carefully Ziegler’s troubled childhood and the absence of any real family. Ziegler’s lawyers portrayed him as a young man abandoned as a baby by a mother involved with drugs and shuffled around from one foster home to another.

However, Prosecutor Kristen A. St. Mary pointed out Ziegler’s lack of remorse, and she referred to tape recordings of phone calls made from jail by Ziegler, in which he boasted about his actions in the brutal act against Phoenix, the Buffalo News reported. “He boasted that he laughed while committing this act,” St. Mary said.

District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III described Ziegler as a “genuine sociopath.”

Ziegler continued to deny setting fire to the puppy but acknowledged he did not intervene. “I should have, and I apologize for that,” he told Buscaglia. “I never intended for anything to happen to the dog.” He also denied boasting about what happened to Phoenix.

Ziegler pleaded guilty in April to felony aggravated cruelty to animals and was sentenced.

Brown, 19, who is Ziegler’s nephew, claimed he had only acted as a lookout while Ziegler lit the puppy on fire. He pleaded guilty to felony animal cruelty and was sentenced in May to six months in jail and five years’ probation and ordered to stay away from animals for five years.

Brown was arrested again in September 2013 for allegedly assaulting a female Canisius College student. The current status of that prosecution was not available, according to

The exact date of Ziegler’s release from custody was not immediately available, but the Examiner reported it as “short.”

As of late Monday afternoon, Buffalo News states that no arrests had been made in the shooting of Ziegler.

Sources: Buffalo News, Examiner