Local News

Fayetteville man arrested after puppy set ablaze

Posted July 12, 2010

— Cumberland County investigators arrested a Fayetteville man Monday afternoon after a 9-week-old pit bull was set on fire.

Tony Brian Knolle, 24, of 549 McBain Drive, was arrested at his home and charged with felony animal cruelty.

Investigators said Knolle tried to burn the puppy to death early Monday following a dispute with his wife.

Miacarla Knolle flagged down a deputy on Ramsey Street while trying to find help for the dog and led him back to her home. She told investigators that she had just dropped her children off at day care and that her husband tried to set the dog on fire because he was tired of taking care of him.

Cumberland County Sheriff's Office Detective Jonathan Perkins said it's unclear what was used to set fire to the dog, noting investigators found no evidence of flammable liquid.

The puppy, named Red, suffered burns, singe marks, blisters and gashes along his left hip and leg.

"It tears me up. I hate to see any animal like this," Perkins said. "With animals and domestic violence, it will start with the animals and then move to the kids and the wife."

Red the pit bull Authorities say puppy was burned in domestic dispute

Miacarla Knolle surrendered the dog to the Cumberland County Animal Shelter, saying she feared for the animal's safety.

The dog was shaking in fear Monday as Perkins held it. He said Red would receive medical treatment and would be held in protective custody at the shelter.

"He's going to be fed. He's going to be housed. There's no chance he's going to be put down or anything," Perkins said. "Animals are defenseless. You can't help but feel bad for the animal."

Authorities said they will be looking for a family to adopt Red once the dog is out of protective custody and no longer is considered evidence in the criminal case.

Tougher penalties for animal cruelty will take effect Dec. 1 after Gov. Beverly Perdue signed Susie's Law last month in honor of a Greensboro dog whose owner was placed on probation after burning, beating and leaving the 8-week-old dog to die.


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  • andela Jul 13, 2010

    He deserves exactly what he did to that puppy! That animal gave unconditional love and complete trust to that man only to be tortured over a dispute with his wife! Next time he gets mad at someone he should do the world a favor and set himself on fire.

  • rixida Jul 13, 2010

    To me that is the epitome of mean. To do that to a defensless animal who did nothing but love you. Can you imagine the pain it felt? I rescued a dog that was hit and crawled off the road into a ditch and she is the most loving dog you can imagine. They know what you do for them.

  • bean731nc Jul 13, 2010

    trash, thats all he is TRASH!!!

  • bassfishingjunky Jul 13, 2010

    I am a 36 year old white male, and when I read this report I teared up and tryed to think what the puppy was thinking and feeling during this time of terra when the person he looked up to and trusted and one day would of grown up and died for him set him on fire. I can't

    The young man has done wrong he knows it, we all know it. We all know it was bad, now lets move on to help stop this kind of act from happening again.

    This young man I have never meet but I know that there is alot he is dealing with and he needs lots of help. No person in the right mind would do this.

    How can we help our young people today deal with personal problems? I don't have any idea other then pray for them at this point. I am not a bible pusher and I am not a perfect person. Maybe this young man just needs a little love. This kind of acts of violance are getting way out of hand. It's not just animals that get hurt it's people as well.

    Lets not forget to pray for the mother and child.

  • DiscoStu65 Jul 13, 2010

    Jeffrey Dahmer abused animals and we saw how that turned out.

  • willowlakenc Jul 13, 2010

    This man deserves the same treatment. Then see how he feels afterwards. Could save the taxpayers a lot of money. Animals abusers are the first step to the next tragic scene. Maybe if there was a severe punishment then maybe we could prevent the next serial killer. They can't have any remorse to do something like that. Do you really want him on the street with you.. You could be the next target.

    I think Fayetteville is just a scary place. Too much violence going on in that area.

  • DiscoStu65 Jul 13, 2010

    way to have a double standard when it comes to posting responses in threads about criminals and about baseball team owners. must suck to be a "fact checker".

  • untiltheyallhaveahome Jul 13, 2010

    how about we all find him and do to him what he did to that poor puppy! I am not a fan of pit bulls but NO animal deserves that. I have 2 rescues at home that neighbors just turned out. One of them lived off of grass, acorns and whatever she could find until she found us. She is the most loving dog and is absolutely no trouble. If you don't want the dog, give it away, don't set it on fire! Boy, I really want to set him on fire now!

  • PoBoy Jul 13, 2010

    Ever hear of a lighter stump? Its a stump from a virgin long leaf pine tree that can be found in several acres of our Sandhills. There stumps, with their abundance of resin in the wood, burns really hot when set onfire. This piece of trash needs to have a certain body part of his nailed to one of these stumps, the stump set on fire and give him a pair of pinking shears!

  • icdumbpeople Jul 13, 2010

    An eye for an eye.

    1. Catch this guy on fire and let’s see how he likes it.
    2. Put him to sleep.
    3. Or better yet, bring him on out to my farm and no animals, women or children will ever have to worry about him hurting them again. And it will save you all some tax dollars.