Police identify suspect in burned dog case

CREATED Apr 10, 2014 - UPDATED: Apr 16, 2014

  • Print
  • Play

UPDATE: The suspect police believe is responsible for stealing and later abusing Beatrice has been identified.

Police said the suspect is a 21-year-old Milwaukee man. He is is currently in custody at the Waukesha County Jail for unrelated charges. 


MILWAUKEE - Beatrice, the dog who captured all of our hearts, is back in the hospital facing severe pain and infection.

TODAY'S TMJ4 introduced you to Beatrice earlier this week, after she was found with burns on over 90 percent of her body. 
For the next few days, Beatrice will undergo multiple surgeries at the The Milwaukee Emergency Center for Animals. 
Because of her severe burns, her skin is falling off. Doctors have to go in and cut out as much of the dead tissue as possible to prevent infection.
Everyone is still wondering how anyone could have hurt her. 
"Every time we touch her, we ask that question," says Dr. Marla Lichtenberger. "Every single day we ask that. Why would someone harm an innocent, sweet little dog?"
Beatrice has visible scars, even though bandages now cover most of them. She is on strong antibiotics and pain medication.
"Her whiskers are starting to grow back," says Beatrice's owner, Karen Smith-Burns. "They had all been burned off just like her eyelashes and everything else. She was burned all the way down her body."
Karen refuses to give up hope. "I decided from the very beginning that I was going to do whatever it took, to get her through this, and that's what I'm doing. One step at a time."
Justice for Beatrice may be coming soon. Police arrested a 21-year-old man for stealing the dog, but have not charged him yet.
"We're so happy they have someone in custody," Dr. Lichtenberger says. 
"I want to make sure who ever did this doesn't hurt any other living creature," Karen adds.
The Milwaukee County District Attorney is reviewing the case. Theft of a domestic animal is a felony. 
Meanwhile, Animal Fairy Charities is offering a $2,000 reward for any information on who did this.