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HICKORY - An investigation involving two dead pit bulls found behind L.P. Frans Stadium in Hickory has been turned over to the Burke County Sheriff’s Office.

“I was informed about the situation by Hickory PD today (Thursday),” Burke County Sheriff Steve Whisenant said. “I notified our Animal Control lieutenant and our CID (criminal investigations division) to contact Hickory PD to get the information so that we can investigate the matter.”

Morganton resident Roger Acker was walking behind the stadium Saturday afternoon and discovered a black/dark gray adult male and a brown/tan puppy, both dead, wrapped in bed sheets and lying in a creek. When he got a closer look on Sunday, Acker found bullet wounds.

The puppy had a bullet wound through its head as well as one through its back and stomach area. The adult had a bullet wound through its rear legs and hip area, Acker said.

Animal Control officers with Hickory Police Department went behind L.P. Frans on Sunday to recover the dog bodies for examination, according to a Tuesday press release. Hickory police did not release any more information.

According to North Carolina statute 14-360, if a person intentionally kills any animal, they would be guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor. Anyone who maliciously kills an animal would be guilty of a class H felony.

Statute 14-360 does not apply if an animal is killed for protecting the public, other animals, property, or the public health.

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