Tucson woman accused of setting family dog, home on fire
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Tucson woman accused of setting family dog, home on fire

A Tucson woman faces three felony charges after police said she poured gasoline on a dog and part of a house and set them ablaze.

Dean Sherfield Finley, 39, is charged with animal cruelty, arson of an occupied structure and criminal damage in the incident in the 6900 block of East Vernice Street, near East Stella and South Kolb roads.

Firefighters were summoned to the home shortly before 1 p.m. on May 7 and found smoke and flames coming from the back of the house.

A Tucson Police Department news release said the suspect "intentionally set fire to the dog and the home." 

Detectives discovered the suspect had purchased two gallons of gasoline earlier that morning, the news release said

A family member picked up the dog after noticing it looked wet and the suspect "lit the dog on fire,' the news release said.

The family member was able to douse the flames but the dog suffered burns and was taken to a veterinary hospital for treatment, it said.

The suspect "then lit the southeast corner of the home on fire," the release said.

The dog, named Lovely, was transferred to Pima Animal Care Center where she is receiving pain medication and specialized, around-the-clock treatment from a medical team, TPD said.

Shelter staff are hand-feeding the animal so she won't have to move any more than necessary.  If her condition stabilizes, she'll need a foster home to continue healing, the news release said.

"Lovely has a whole team of lifesavers behind her," PACC director Kristen Auerbach said in the TPD news release.  

"This little dog has a tragic story and potentially life-threatening injuries but were going to do everything we can to save her and show her she is loved."

The specialized care is expected to be expensive and PACC is hoping to attract donations to help offset the cost.

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