RHODES, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Three family pets are dead and the Marshall County Sheriff's Office said an 11-year-old boy is to blame.
Investigators said they suspect the boy killed two dogs and one cat with lethal injections of insulin, and it was an intentional act.
It happened in Rhodes, in southwestern Marshall County, about 35 miles northeast of Des Moines.
According to the sheriff's office, deputies responded to a 911 call Thursday, July 12, from a mother asking for help with her son. She told them the boy was acting erratically.
When deputies arrived at the home, they found the three family pets barely breathing, and called a volunteer animal rescue organization to help.
"We walked up to the house and we actually had all three of the animals laid out on the sidewalk," said Austin Gillis of Diamond in the Ruff Rescue. "We needed to get those animals medical attention immediately, or there was no hope."
Gillis said the cat and a pit bull died early Friday morning, and the smaller dog died Friday afternoon.
He said he hopes the legal system will hold the 11-year-old accountable.
"For these animals to be injected with lethal doses of anything, whether it be insulin or any other kind of medicine, is just beyond comprehension," Gillis said.
The State Center Police Chief said the boy likely got the insulin from his mother, who had recently filled her own prescription. The chief said investigators found three empty vials near the pets, and each vial would have contained a 30 day supply of insulin.
The Marshall County Sheriff expects charges to be filed against the 11-year-old this week.