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Wash. state man pleads guilty to blowing up his dog

Cabela the dog was killed with explosives by his owner in 2012
Cabela the dog was killed with explosives by his owner in 2012
Family photo

On Friday, Jan. 3, KOMO 4 News reported that a Stevenson, Wash. man who killed his dog with a bomb has pleaded guilty to animal cruelty and possession of explosives without a license.

According to KPTV, Christopher W. Dillingham changed his plea on Thursday, Jan. 2.

On Thursday, Aug. 14, Dillingham had pleaded not guilty to reckless endangerment, possession of an explosive device, and animal cruelty. Dillingham, 45, has a criminal history that includes domestic violence.

Court documents state that Dillingham told officers that he killed his dog, named "Cabela," last August because he believed that his ex-girlfriend had "put the devil in it."

Officers responded after the blast alarmed neighbors. According to police reports, Cabela, the family's Labrador retriever, received treats for accommodating the strange device her owner reportedly strapped to her body.

Animal advocacy organization Pasado's Safe Haven noted that when authorities arrived at the scene early on Sunday, August 4, they saw what remained of Cabela’s lifeless body and evidence of an explosive. Dillingham was arrested and booked into jail, but he wasn't initially charged with animal cruelty.

Pasado’s contacted the Skamania County Sheriff’s Office and asked that Dillingham face animal cruelty charges. Washington State has strong animal cruelty laws.

According to RCW 16.52.205 animal cruelty in the first degree:

(1) A person is guilty of animal cruelty in the first degree when, except as authorized in law, he or she intentionally
(a) inflicts substantial pain on,
(b) causes physical injury to, or
(c) kills an animal by a means causing undue suffering, or forces a minor to inflict unnecessary pain, injury, or death on an animal.

(2) A person is guilty of animal cruelty in the first degree when, except as authorized by law, he or she, with criminal negligence, starves, dehydrates, or suffocates an animal and as a result causes:
(a) Substantial and unjustifiable physical pain that extends for a period sufficient to cause considerable suffering; or
(b) death.

Dillingham reportedly stated that he was preparing for "the rapture" and that "the world is going to end" due to a nuclear strike.

Investigators believe that Dillingham used black powder from fireworks to make the bomb that killed Cabela.

Dillingham was sentenced to approximately one year in jail. He received credit for time already served.

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