Dog mutilation case leads investigators to potential crime scene, rightful owner

MCLENNAN COUNTY - Investigators with the McLennan County Sheriff's Office believe they have found the place where a dog was defiled by two local teenagers two weekends ago in China Spring.  Video of the mutilation was posted to Snapchat and went viral, causing a public uproar, and has been removed by Facebook.

After learning about the video which was posted by a Facebook user on Friday, on Monday, the law enforcement agency in charge continued to investigate the disturbing incident.  They not only discovered the potential crime scene, but also the rightful dog owner.

Sheriff Parnell McNamara said the dog belonged to a woman in China Spring, and not the man in Lorena who came forward saying the dog was his.

"One of the main things we're dealing with, an animal that apparently is dead, and we're trying to determine how the dog died and if in fact it was dead at the time. So, we're in the process of interviewing more people that may have something, may have knowledge of this incident," said Sheriff McNamara.

The owner lives near Patrick Road and N. Rock Creek Loop in China Spring, a location which McNamara said matched-up with the suspects' story that they hit a dog in the same area with a pickup truck, then put its body in the truck-bed.

According to multiple sources within law enforcement, Molina and other suspects went to several parties with the dog in the back of the truck before defiling the dog.

While Molina's father is a Waco Police officer who lives in Hewitt, the McLennan County Sheriffs Office is handling the investigation because China Spring, an unincorporated area of the county, falls under their jurisdiction.

On Monday, deputies believed they'd found the exact location the mutilation took place; they recovered shell casings, and possibly bone fragments from the scene.  They also interviewed more people, and re-interviewed the two or more suspects, to get more information before moving forward.

However, their hands may be bound by the laws of Texas which don't make mutilating a dead animal's body illegal.

Besides animal cruelty, other charges being tossed around for consideration included the illegal use of a firearm, arson, and possibly even criminal mischief or beastiality.

The charges depend on what investigators learn and what the District Attorney's Office feels they can prosecute.

A twist in the case: several members of the public could also be facing charges for posting the address of Molina's father on social media, because making the address of a peace officer public is now against the law in Texas.

According to Hewitt Police, the Molina family has been receiving death threats, and people have been driving by their Hewitt home honking horns.

Channel six tried reaching the family in-person and over the phone Monday but was unsuccessful.


(© 2016 KCEN)


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