Man Blows Up Dog, But Won’t Face Animal Cruelty Charges

Stevenson, WA — A Washington man was arrested for strapping an explosive device to his dog and detonating it after a dispute with his daughter.

Christopher Dillingham was charged with possession of an explosive device and reckless endangerment. He wasn’t charged with animal cruelty because “death (to the dog) was instantaneous,” according to undersheriff Dave Cox.

Skamania County prosecutor Adam Kick said, “We are reviewing the animal cruelty statutes and case law, and if the law allows, we will file additional charges in relation to the killing of the dog.”

Sheriff’s deputies were called to the 45-year-old’s home around 3:45 am Sunday after police received multiple reports of an explosion. Skamania County Sheriff Dave Brown lives nearby and said the explosion woke him up. He said it sounded like a high-powered rifle.

Responding deputies found the dog’s remains strewn about Dillingham’s property. Various items were also scattered about the lawn, including a couch. Dillingham told police that he was preparing for the rapture and that the world was going to end because of a nuclear strike. He also believed “the souls of demons” were in the metal items in his home.

A law enforcement official said Dillingham killed the dog after a fight with his daughter. Dillingham said he killed the dog because he got it from his ex-girlfriend and he believed she “put the devil in it.” He said he used black powder from fireworks to create the explosive. Dillingham fed the dog treats to distract it long enough for him to detonate the bomb.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and the metro area’s bomb squad responded to the home and seized multiple pieces of evidence.

Christopher Dillingham has a criminal record that includes DUI, assault, and domestic violence. He is being held on $500,000 bail and is due in court later this month.

Do you think Christopher Dillingham should be charged with animal cruelty for blowing up the dog?