Update: George County dog dies from burns

Photo Submitted By George County Sheriff's Dept.
Photo Submitted By George County Sheriff's Dept.

GEORGE COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Socks, the dog reportedly burned this week by his owner, has died.  That word comes from a George County Sheriff's deputy.

Socks succumbed to injuries suffered after 20-year-old Brandon Pierce allegedly set his dog on fire Tuesday night.  The suspect told deputies he torched the dog because he "wanted to help the dog go to heaven."

An anonymous 911 called alerted deputies to the trouble.  The caller said Pierce had set his dog on fire and "going psycho while crazy on meth" at a residence on Greenwood Road in Lucedale.

When deputies entered the Pierce family home, the suspect was reportedly found in the bedroom acting erratically.  That's when he told the deputies he was trying to kill his dog.

Because authorities felt Pierce was acting very much out of control, they took him to George Regional Hospital. He was checked,  released, and then transported to George County Regional Jail with old warrants and facing a new charge of animal cruelty.

Investigators believe Socks was doused with a flammable and set on fire.

A nearby animal clinic treated the dog for two days, before realizing Socks would not make it.  The initial fear was the burns were so severe, Socks would lose a front leg, and eyesight due to the burns on the face.  The media was also told the dog's tip of its nose was burned off.  An email announcing Sock's death came at 4:30 Thursday afternoon.

George County deputies say this is not the first time Pierce has been charged with animal cruelty.

Mississippi enacted a new animal cruelty law in 2011.  Based on that law, a person convicted of a second-offense aggravated cruelty to a dog or cat within five years could receive a fine up to $5,000 and one to five years' imprisonment. All other new penalties in the bill are misdemeanors, with penalties reaching $2,500 in fines and up to six months in jail.

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