WEST HAVEN, CT (WFSB) – Thousands of dollars in reward money are being pledged to lead police to whomever killed a dog at a West Haven beach on the Fourth of July.

As police continue to investigate the gruesome incident, donations keep pouring in with the hopes it will soon lead to an arrest.

“The lady at the Post Office called me and said, ‘come down, I have cash for you that I want to put towards the reward.’ We’ve gotten tons of pledges, Facebook, people’s friends, family members,” said Meli Garthwait, Green Fur Kidz.

For Meli Garthwait, this crime is very personal. She rescues and adopts dogs since 2005.

Her home sits across from West Haven’s Sandy Point Beach where someone lit a dog on a fire.

Garthwait decided to start raising money through her non-profit dog rescue, Green Fur Kidz, to help catch the killer.

“It’s like, there’s been on pledge of $10,000 from Executive Auto Group,” Garthwait said.

Garthwait says she’s received more than $14,000 in pledges. The money will eventually go to the police department and she says other groups are collecting money, such as PETA, which as separately pledged $5,000.

“For West Haven in particular, this beach is really important to families to come out with children and relax and not be finding stuff like this. It’s pretty bad,” said Katerina Gillis, CT Audubon Society.

Katerina Gillis, with the Connecticut Audubon Society and its wildlife guard program, is keeping tabs on the protected birds along the beach.

She says the news of the dog’s death is pretty horrifying, but adds she came across another grizzly incident in the same spot last week.

“A week ago, prior to this incident, I had found a dismembered dog that was washed up on the shore in a plastic bag, with chickens that were also deceased too,” Gillis said.

Gillis said animal control went out and processed that scene and now detectives are dealing with the latest discovery.

“We hope to keep on growing our reward pit to entice someone to come forward. I think at this point, it’s just let the West Have Police Department do their job,” Garthwait said.

Anyone with information is asked to call the West Have Detective Division or the Animal Control Office.

If you would like to donate to the fund that Garthwait started up, click here.

Copyright 2019 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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