Md. Man Honored For Leading Police To Animal Abuse Suspects

BALTIMORE (WJZ)—After one of the most brutal cases of animal abuse in Baltimore City, a man is honored for helping lead police to the suspects.

Jessica Kartalija reports his help eventually led to a conviction.

It’s been close to a year since three children—ages 10 and 11—beat a puppy to death with a belt and stick on a Baltimore City golf course.

A Carroll Park employee found the pit bull and called police.

On Wednesday, that groundskeeper was honored for leading police to the suspects and eventually a conviction.

Robert Widerman accepted a $3,000 check for his heroism.

“If you feel you need to go forward with something that’s a crime, do what you need to do,” Widerman said.

This case happened days after a dog lost an eye when she was attacked with a machete, and a pit bull named Phoenix was burned alive, then later died.

Many of these cases involve children and teens.

“It’s very important abusers are held accountable, whether they are 10 years old or 50 years old,” said Caroline Griffin, Anti-Animal Abuse Task Force. “That starts with the public reporting these crimes.”

Baltimore’s Anti-Animal Abuse Task Force says these tips have led to a sharp decline in the number of abuse cases in recent months.

“We think people understand they will be prosecuted if they commit these crimes,” said Kevin Usilton, Director, Baltimore City Animal Control. “The other great thing is, citizens are calling in and reporting it.”

As for the three children involved in that case, they were found responsible. Because they are minors, information on the penalties they face is not available to the public.

The city is urging anyone who witnesses an animal being abused to call police.

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