Police in Sacramento are actively searching for a man who they say tied a dog to a bowling ball and drowned it in a river.
47-year-old William Meek is being hunted by police for committing the vicious act of animal cruelty. According to reports, the 12-year-old border collie named Zelda was found in the American River back in June. The city animal shelter discovered a microchip in the dog and traced it back to its owner. The owner told police that she had put Zelda in Meek’s care and that he had told her that he gave it to the city’s shelter. City animal care manager Gina Knepp says, however, that they never received Zelda.
“[The claims are] obviously not true,” Knepp said. “We do not believe he came to the shelter.”
The dog was found hooked to a retractable leash that was tied to a bowling bag containing a bowling ball and a rock. Tests revealed that Zelda had signs of trauma around its neck, which were said to be caused by a struggle to free itself.
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“The dog was alive when it entered the river,” Knepp said. “It’s a terrible case.”
Witness Robert Courtade said he discovered the dog floating in the river while walking with his kids.
“I came upon what I thought was a couple of sticks, just kind of twisting in the water, and once we got closer, it was a pair of dog legs,” said Courtade. “I realized that the dog had been strangled pretty grotesquely and thrown into the water with a bowling ball bag tied around its neck. So it was a deliberate act of awful cruelty.”
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Knepp says that she hopes police track down Meek soon.
“We need to get him arrested, and go to trial, unless he pleads guilty, we’ll find out what happens,” said Knepp. “But right now, we just have to find him and get him into custody.”