March 31, 2011
Albemarle County Police have arrested two people in connection with the fatal shooting of a family pet in the Earlysville area of the county. A 10-month-old Siberian Husky named Mattie (seen below) was killed in January.
Justin Riggs, 26, of Charlottesville, has been charged with cruelty to animals, taking game or fish during closed season, and possession of a firearm after having been convicted of a violent felony. Brian Tichner, 21, of Dyke, has been charged with possession of a firearm after having been convicted of a violent felony.
Riggs was arrested on Tuesday and Tichner on Wednesday. Both are being held at the Albemarle Charlottesville Regional Jail pending a bond hearing. Police believe both men were hunting in the neighborhood at the time the dog was shot.
Both men also have a criminal past. Court records indicate Riggs has been previously charged with firing a missile into an occupied vehicle and several other minor offense, including a probation violation. Tichner was accused three years ago of breaking and entering and grand larceny.
On January 15, Ed and Yvonne Scarborough reported that their 10-month-old Siberian Husky, Mattie, was shot and killed in front of their house in the Fray's Grant neighborhood.
The Scarborough family initially offered a $10,000 for information leading to an arrest. The community rallied around the effort and added to the reward, increasing it to $26,000.
The reward has not been handed out.