Local News

Soldier must carry photo of drowned dog as part of sentence

Posted September 27, 2016

Riley was an 8-month-old lab mix (Photo from Facebook)

— A Fort Bragg soldier pleaded guilty Tuesday to tying up his puppy in late 2014 and tossing it into a pond, where it drowned.

John Garrett Burrow, 24, of 440 Georgetown Circle, pleaded guilty to felony cruelty to animals.

Authorities said Burrow used military parachute cord to hog-tie Riley, an 8-month-old Lab mix, before tossing the dog into McFadyen Lake in Fayetteville. The dog's carcass washed up on the shore of the pond on Jan. 2, 2015.

Neighbors said they were outraged by the dog's death, noting that they had given Burrow and his wife hundreds of dollars after the couple claimed Riley had been injured and they couldn't afford to pay veterinary bills.

Superior Court Judge Jim Ammons sentenced Burrow to 30 days in jail and ordered him to perform 100 hours of community service, possibly at Cumberland County Animal Control. Burrow also will spend two years on probation, during which Ammons ordered him to carry a photo of Riley in his wallet.

Burrow won't be able to own any pets for five years, as part of his plea agreement. The felony conviction will be wiped from his record if he successfully completes the terms of the deal.

His wife, Kelsey Caroline Burrow, 22, still faces a misdemeanor charge of being an accessory after the fact in the case.


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  • Buster Brown Sep 29, 2016
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    Oh now isnt this a measure of justice???

  • David Craft Sep 28, 2016
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    I hope he got a BCD out of this also...That is a sick individual...

  • Dan Wilder Sep 28, 2016
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    Got now problem with hog tying him and throwing him in a pond.....oh...ok.. I'd pull him out after a minute or two .....maybe..
    I despised animal torturers. Love animals...not too crazy about people though...

  • Linda Tally Sep 27, 2016
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    Way too light a sentence. No mention of whether he had to return the money neighbors put up, either. Nope, no justice here - just a token whisper.

  • Chris Cooper Sep 27, 2016
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    I'm sure he'll carry the picture around in his wallet...it'll just be tucked away in a hidden compartment in the wallet and never looked at!

  • Trisha Davis Sep 27, 2016
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    What a harsh punishment, I hope he learns his lesson... has to carry around a picture of the dog he murdered.?! What kind of shiznit is that?!

  • Sandy Weinstein Sep 27, 2016
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    the felony crime should never be removed. he is an adult, not a minor. he and his wife will do it again, just wait.

  • Sandy Weinstein Sep 27, 2016
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    this is ridiculous. he should have gone to jail. nc law states he should have gone to jail, prison for this crime. he should never own a pet, should have paid a very large fine, he got off b/c he is a soldier. ridiculous.

  • Russell Iglehart Sep 27, 2016
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    The Felony conviction should never come off his record... Speaks volumes about his Character

  • Aiden Audric Sep 27, 2016
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    View quoted thread

    And, god forbid, if they have kids, they should have CPS investigations for the first few years.
    People who abuse animals generally move onto people.