Auglaize County Dog Warden Russ Bailey
Two â€śpeople of interestâ€ť have been named in a case involving the drowning of a dog found Saturday at Grand Lake St. Marys.
Grand Lake St. Marys State Park Manager Brian Miller said park officials were notified Saturday by deputies with the Auglaize County Sheriffâ€™s Office that a dog was found submerged in the lake inside a cage near Rustic Haven Campgrounds in St. Marys Township. The dog had drowned.
Law enforcement officials immediately started an investigation which resulted in information obtained up from the cage.
Auglaize County Dog Warden Russ Bailey said information led them to naming Mardie Biederman and Nicole Thompson, of Florida, as persons of interest. They are currently being sought for questioning concerning the dog.
â€śWe currently have some leads that we are acting on,â€ť Bailey said. â€śBecause of the humane concerns of the incident, the Auglaize County Humane Society is also doing some follow-up.â€ť
Bailey said Sidney police officers also have aided in the investigation.
According to reports, witnesses said Biederman, and Thompson, his girlfriend, were in the area and stayed at the campgrounds approximately one week ago but have since returned to their residence in Florida.
Biederman owns a camper at the campgrounds.
The drowned dog has been identified as either a female pit bull or pit bull-mix that recently had pups. The dog was mostly white with a few black spots.
Bailey estimates the dog has been dead for approximately one week.
Bailey said there currently still are no suspects and the reason Biederman and Thompson are being sought was because information on the cage traced back to them.
He said Thompson has been contacted and was questioned for a short time.
Bailey said charges will be filed if enough evidence can be collected to prosecute.
Bailey said anyone who may have information should contact the dog warden at 419-302-8303, the park office at 419-394-36111 or the Auglaize County Humane Society at 419-738-7808.