Updated: Feb 9
- Florida, USA -
On the evening of January 28, a man called 911 to report that he had witnessed an animal being set on fire.
Lee County Sheriff deputies were immediately dispatched to a property in the 11800 block of Isle of Palms Drive in Fort Myers Beach.
Upon arrival deputies encountered two individuals along with a distressed opossum in a metal trap.
The opossum was still alive but was suffering from significant burns.
On the scene deputies found a long string tied to the metal trap which led to a staircase at the rear of the house.
At the end of the string there was a bottle of acetone and a grill lighter.
A search warrant was executed on the house.
The Sheriff’s Office said that forensics processed the crime scene and pulled fingerprints and palm prints from the tin acetone can.
The prints were examined by the latent fingerprints division and yielded a match identifying one of the suspects on the scene as 39-year-old BRYAN WERNER (pictured below).
This sick individual was arrested for aggravated animal cruelty and booked into the Lee County Jail.
NBC2 reports that WERNER has a lengthy criminal history of offenses in Lee County and now animal cruelty has been added to the list.
The opossum was transported to the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) in Sanibel.
When the Sheriff’s Office posted the story on their Facebook page, they wrote that the opossum was stable but on January 29, the Sheriff’s Office sadly announced that the poor soul had succumbed to his injuries.
This story is sourced from official news outlets. Links included.
Details may be removed or additional information may be provided in future should such sources report an update.