NASHUA, Iowa – A domestic disturbance call led Nashua police to a gruesome discovery of a deceased dog and a threat toward a child, shocking residents in this town of 1,600 people within the last week.
John Granchie, pastor of the famed Little Brown Church, is originally from a suburb of Youngstown, Ohio, and says it's disturbing to see this happen in a town this size and can affect smaller towns because of the tight knit atmosphere.
"Where I'm from, because we're a city of 40-50,000 people, you're not as affected. Here, when someone in our community hurts, we all hurt," Granchie says.
Nashua police arrested three people after a report that the homeowners’ dog had gone missing under unusual circumstances and its body was possibly being stored in a basement freezer.
Three people – Jennifer Linn Hoffman, Anthony John Hoffman and Christopher Allan Dann – are facing charges after an incident at 421 Wentling St. on March 7.
According to court documents, the canine had been poisoned and two of the occupants of the home were involved.
A child at the home was taken for an interview and stated his uncle “poisoned the dog and threatened to place the same poison in his milk because he should feel the same way the canine feels,” the complaint states.
A search warrant was requested following the interview.
A second canine was taken from the home during the search and a substance believed to be rat poison was found in its kennel.
While Police Chief Travis Martin was not assigned to the scene that day, he says when officers respond to these calls, it can be very emotional.
"We're officers of the law, but we're also people. Sometimes people forget that. All of us here [at the police department] are animal lovers as well, and it strikes a cord in us, and it saddens us when we have a situation like this," Martin says.
The following charges have been filed:
Jennifer Hoffman, 34, has been charged with child endangerment.
Anthony Hoffman, 44, has been charged with child endangerment, animal abuse, three counts of possession of a controlled substance, unlawful possession of a prescription drug and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Dann, 30, has been charged with child endangerment, animal abuse, two counts of possession of a controlled substance, unlawful possession of a prescription drug and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Police say the deceased canine’s body was recovered and transported to the ISU Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.