The Washington Post

Dale City man sets dog, house on fire (UPDATE: Man charged)


(Mark Wilson)

UPDATE, July 15: The owner of the Rottweiler has been given a summons for illegal outside burning, InsideNova.com reports. The man’s name is Charles Harris, the dog’s name was Thor, and Harris told InsideNova’s David Pierce that having an animal service pick up Thor and bury him was too costly.

ORIGINAL POST: The grieving owner of a deceased Rottweiler decided to send him off in a blaze of glory Wednesday morning in Dale City. And that blaze then caused $70,000 of inglorious damage to the man’s house, the Prince William County fire department told InsideNova.com.

The man’s name was not released, in part because he could face charges of burning without a permit. Burning what was not specified. Just burning.

Prince William fire Battalion Chief Joe Robertson told InsideNova’s Kari Pugh that the Rottweiler, whose name also was not released, was 11 years old when he expired. The man, who lives in the 4500 block of Kingston Road in the Kerrydale neighborhood, had apparently built a funeral pyre of wood for his passed pal, then used gasoline to heighten the fire, and the gas spread the flames to the house, Robertson said.

The dog’s original cause of death was unknown, and Robertson said he didn’t know why the Rottweiler’s owner decided to dispose of his former friend by gas-fueled fire at 9 a.m. on a Wednesday morning. Firefighters found smoke billowing from the front and flames in the attic, Robertson reported.

Tom Jackman is a native of Northern Virginia and has been covering the region for The Post since 1998.

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