There has been a new development in the case of Tim Conatser, the volunteer firefighter who bragged on Facebook that he gunned down his neighbor’s two dogs. Conatser posted the graphic image of two dead Labradors to Facebook and included a message that disturbed people around the globe.
“Somebody didn’t put any truth my warning,” Conatser wrote, horrifying of dog lovers worldwide. “Keep your damn dogs on your property.”
— Donna Hughes (@DonnaLHughes) February 26, 2015
Last week, Conatser resigned following public outrage over his actions, and after being suspended from the Union Valley Fire Department, according to their Facebook page.
“As previously stated, we do not condone the recent actions of one of our firefighters. We are following our policy in removing him from our department. This is now a civil/criminal matter that we have no jurisdiction over. Please forward all concerns to local law enforcement and/or the SPCA.”
Wednesday, the former fireman from North Texas was arrested and charged with two counts of felony animal cruelty. 20-year-old Tim Conatser of Royse City, Texas, ended up turning himself in to the Hunt County Sheriff’s Office after learning of the charges, according to NBC.
Pulido Rodrigo, the owner of the two dogs, told the media that he learned that his dogs, named Gordo and Spike, had been shot by Conatser from the image that was shared on social media. He allegedly recognized his Labradors right away from the photo and couldn’t figure out how anyone could do something like that. He said he was in shock.
NY Daily Times reported that a friend of Conatser told a reporter that Gordo and Spike were in Conatser’s barn, attacking his cattle, and that he shot the dogs in order to protect his own property, but according to CBS, the investigation into the shooting of Gordo and Spike found that that claim was untrue. There was no evidence that Conatser killed the dogs to protect livestock, which is why the charges of animal cruelty were brought up against him. In Texas, it would be legal for Conatser to have shot the dogs on his property if the dogs had been in the act of killing or having already killed his livestock.
The bodies of the two family dogs were found dumped in a ditch several miles away from where Conatser lived. Robert Harris took a photo of the dogs when he found them on Wednesday afternoon around 12:30.
“As we were coming around the corner right here, just plain as day they were just sitting in the ditch. I mean there were stacked on top of each other like common trash. It was a malicious act. It was horrible.”
Harris told a reporter he was outraged.
“Why are you gonna brag about killing something? Period. I’m a hunter, but I’m not gonna go out there and post a kill of my dear. There are just certain things that you try to keep to yourself.”
If convicted, Tim Conatser faces up to two years in a state jail and fines of up to $10,000 for each count of felony animal cruelty, according to the SPCA.