A reward of $3,100 is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the severe abuse of a puppy in Troy, including apparently setting the the dog on fire.
"We aren't sure exactly what happened or how long it was until Percy was found," Troy Police Chief Katie Davis said, "only that Percy was in a bad situation."
It was Davis who gave the seriously injured dog the name "Percy," a combination of the words perseverance and mercy.
"It seemed fitting," Davis said.
Percy turned up on the porch of a Troy home on Callahan Creek and Sixth Street March 9. Tracks in the snow showed that the puppy tried to get into a trash can for food, gave up, and crawled to the porch.
Percy's picture was posted on the City of Troy's Facebook page in an attempt to find his owner, but no one claimed him. After a full week at the veterinarians, Percy was taken to a rescue, where he was taken care of until being adopted to a new home earlier this month. A GoFundMe account established for Percy raised more than enough for his treatment and care from a community outraged that a member of the community could abuse an animal so cruelly.
"Everybody has an idea who did it," a person familiar with the situation said. "No one is willing to come forward for fear of retaliation."
While there is uncertainty as to what befell Percy, about nine months old, it appears that he was beaten, stomped and kicked, and that he was sprayed with a flammable fluid, possibly lighter fluid, and set afire.
It's believed that Percy clenched his eyes shut when the fluid was lit, which, coupled with his heavy coat, likely damp when the atrocity occurred, saved his sight. He suffered serious burns to his face, neck and between his hind legs.
It is suspected by his injuries that he was tied up when he was ignited, and likely trapped until he was able to either chew through the collar he was wearing or lost enough weight that he was able to slip the collar.
He was emaciated, near starving, with gravel in his stool showing how dire was his hunger.
Despite all he'd been through, Percy showed his caretakers nothing but love during the nearly two months he was recovering before being adopted by a family who will love him in return.
"He doesn't have a mean bone in his body," one of his caretakers said. "He did not deserve what he went through."
"We are still actively investigating and asking for any one with knowledge or information on what transpired to come forward," Davis said. "I don't have much information I can give at this time except that we would like to find and convict whoever did this."
Anyone with information that might help is encouraged to call the Troy Police Department at (406) 295-4111.