The Heartwarming Story That Generated Awareness & Encouraged A Reward To Catch A Gentle Dog's Abuser: The Story Of OP
The Mayor Slay Animal Cruelty Task Force continues to make a significant difference as a man has been arrested in connection to the September 21st case where a dog was shot 12 times, strangled with an electrical cord, thrown in a dumpster, and left for dead. The suspect, Ron Jackson of Arlington Avenue, is being charged with felony animal abuse.
“The fact that OP’s abuser could be brought to justice after his violent crime shows that the Mayor’s task force continues to make great strides in the fight against animal abuse and neglect in our neighborhoods,” said Grim. “The message that this criminal behavior will not be tolerated is getting louder.”
The Animal Cruelty Task Force, announced in late September of this year, is averaging an arrest every week.
“I knew in my heart this collaboration that makes up the task force would work, and it has,” said Grim.
"This partnership is working on many levels," said Mayor Slay. "First, our Refuse Division employee was attentive enough to find this animal and bring it to Stray Rescue's attention. Stray Rescue was able to give the dog another chance for a good life. And now, thanks to the Animal Cruelty Task Force, the individual will be brought to justice. I thank all involved, especially Randy Grim and Officer Naes, for their good work.”
In late September, we responded to a call about a dog who had been tossed away in a dumpster and left to die after being shot at least 12 times and strangled by an electrical cord. Now, that gentle dog who was paralyzed and lost the use of his back legs has walked out of the hospital following his miraculous recovery; with the help of a donated, custom-built cart.
The call came in from an employee in the City’s Refuse Division on September 21 at 6000 block of Emma Avenue. The rescued dog, formerly known as Extension but now named OP, short for Optimus Prime, is a striking reminder of both the resiliency of our four-legged friends, as well as the violence of which people are capable.
“This dog suffered unspeakable abuse and was knocking on death’s door,” said Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue. “Thanks to the dedication and compassion of Stray Rescue staff, Veterinary Specialty Services, the Refuse Department, and Animal Care and Control, OP is likely experiencing trust, safety, and comfort for the first time. It’s truly miraculous, and his story can motivate people to continue standing up to this unacceptable criminal behavior.”
OP received intensive medial attention at Veterinary Specialty Services for weeks. The resilient, sweet dog was handed over to his new foster, Randy Grim, and his limp back legs were aided by a cart that was custom built by Stay Rescue supporter and racecar driver Aaron Wood.
With the recent formation of the Mayor Francis Slay Animal Abuse Task Force and Stray Rescue of St. Louis dealing with a multitude of cruelty calls, animal abuse and neglect cases have been a widely discussed topic of concern in recent months. In an effort to catch the clearly dangerous individual who riddled OP’s body with bullets, Stray Rescue is offering a $2,500 reward to anyone who comes forward with information leading to an arrest and conviction.
If people would like to make a direct impact on helping abused companion animals like OP, there is The Stracks Fund Matching Gift Campaign. In this campaign, the Mary Lou Shannahan Foundation will match up to $135,000 of funds donated to Stray Rescue’s emergency medical fund between now and March 31, 2013. People are encouraged to donate online at www.stracksfund.org or send donations for The Stracks Fund to 2320 Pine Street, St. Louis, MO 63103.
“These cases are tough, but Stray Rescue does everything we can to save these deserving lives,” said Grim. “I’m overjoyed to take him home and close this painful chapter of his life.”
To view the KSDK Channel 5 news story of OP leaving VSS, please click here.
To see the original rescue story on Stray Rescue’s website, go to www.strayrescue.org/node/4741