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Reward money in "Puppy Doe" case on hold as tips are reviewed

Posted by Jessica Bartlett  November 1, 2013 04:58 PM

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Although a suspect has been in police custody since Oct. 23 for allegedly abusing a Quincy dog, the thousands of dollars in reward money offered throughout the investigation will not be handed out for a while.

Radoslaw Czerkawski, a 32-year-old Polish immigrant, was charged with 11 counts of animal abuse and one count of misleading a police investigation. But the several organizations that put up reward money for information in the "Puppy Doe" case are still gathering information.

“We’ll be working with police over the next several weeks to figure out the contribution different tips made to the arrest and contribution to the case being weighed against the suspect at this point,” said Ami Bowen, director of marketing and communications with the Animal Rescue League of Boston.

The League offered $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and prosecution of a suspect, raised from private donations. An additional $35,000 was raised for the organization's animal-abuse investigation efforts.

The organization was one of many to open their pockets for information about the Quincy dog, which was found near death at a Quincy playground on Aug. 31.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) offered up an additional $5,000, yet the money is predicated on both the arrest and conviction of a suspect.

“We have to make sure it’s the correct person,” said Sarah Preston, a PETA spokeswoman.

If a conviction does occur, Preston said the organization would work with police to verify the value of different tips. That information would go to the Rewards Review Board, and money would be paid out accordingly.

“We wouldn’t give a reward just for an arrest; there needs to be a conviction,” agreed David Perle out of PETA’s Washington office. “My colleagues are paying close attention to that.”

The Animal Legal Defense Fund also put up $2,000 for “truthful testimony leading to the arrest and prosecution of the perpetrator.”

“It’s way too soon to tell where the moneys are going to go, if at all,” said Diane Balkin, a contract attorney with the criminal justice program. “We have to let the dust settle and see what the professionals handling the case [say, what] their evaluation is of witnesses and testimony and evidence.”

Meanwhile Second Chance Rescue out of New York seemed excited to hand out reward money after the arrest of an abuse suspect.

“We don’t have the facts yet. We’re waiting to hear back from detectives at Quincy Police,” said Jackie O’Sullivan, a partner with the organization.

O’Sullivan noted that websites have named several people who contributed to the investigation, but didn’t want to jump to any conclusions.

“Before we make decisions, we need to make sure the money goes to the right person or persons and so we’re waiting to hear back from Detectives at the Quincy Police Department,” she said.

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