PHOENIX - Andre, a little dog who captured the hearts of thousands of people last year, has died. Police continue to look for the person who abused him.
Andre was stuffed in a bag and left in a field, near 99th Avenue and Lower Buckeye Road, in January 2012. He was starved, his eyes were gouged and he was shot with a BB gun. Police say a passerby came across the bag and heard whimpering, then discovered the dog inside. That witness told police that a young man in a white car had dropped off the black garbage bag.
Veterinarians worked to save Andre after his rescue. After going through surgery and being adopted by a new family, it appeared as though he was on the road to recovery.
His story captivated thousands of people. The 'Andre the Rescue Dog' Facebook page has more than 7,500 supporters.
"We helped raise money to contribute to his surgery," said Lesly Isaacson, who became involved after hearing Andre's story. Isaacson said she thought it would be happily ever after for Andre but several months later discovered Andre had died.
On October 6, 2012, Andre's new adoptive family posted the message on Facebook. Isaacson said Andre likely died from complications related to the abuse.
"I knew we had to do something," she said.
Isaacson and some other volunteers have canvassed the neighborhood near the crime scene. They've posted fliers and knocked on doors to spread Andre's story.
The group, who now calls themselves Andre's Angels, wants to catch Andre's abuser and raise awareness on animal cruelty.
The Silent Witness reward is currently $3,000. Phoenix Police are looking for leads. Anyone with information is asked to call 480-WITNESS. Tips are anonymous.