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Police still looking for dogs and owners

February 05, 2003|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - State police continue their search for the two people whose dogs were freed from Berkeley County's animal control facility hours before they were to be euthanized to determine whether they know anything about the break-in.

The case was transferred from the Martinsburg Police Department to West Virginia state troopers, who have a wider jurisdiction. Authorities believe the dogs' owners may be in another part of the state, said West Virginia State Police Sgt. Deke Walker.

Someone broke a window and entered the animal control office on South Queen Street, either during the night of Jan. 27 or in the early morning hours of Jan. 28.

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Several dogs were wandering loose in the building, and two were gone - Casper, a 2-year-old deaf Dalmatian/pit bull mix; and Coco, an 8-year-old, one-eyed terrier.

Circuit Judge David Sanders ruled last year that Casper and Coco were responsible for a horse's death in May 2002 and ordered that they be destroyed.

Euthanasia was postponed for four months to allow the dogs' owners, Shenandoah Warner, 28, and Christina Ball, 34, time to appeal.

No formal appeal was ever filed, though, and the dogs were set to be euthanized on Jan. 28.

Police want to find Warner and Ball to see if they have the dogs and to find out if they have any more information.

"It's somebody that we want to talk to about the break-in," Walker said.

Trooper C.C. Morton is investigating the case.

Harboring and hiding the dogs is a misdemeanor offense that for each day carries a possible sentence of up to 30 days in jail and a $10 to $50 fine per dog.

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