Who, age What Where When Last Known Address
Teofilo Falaniko Jr., 20 cooked a dog alive during the commission of a burglary

Dillon, SC

Dillon County

October 22, 2009  
Type of Crime Other Crimes #/Type of animal(s) involved Case Status Next Court Date
Felony Burglary 1 Pug Convicted  

Circuit Court Judge Paul Burch set a $100,000 surety bond on first-degree burglary charges for a man police say broke into a Dillon woman’s home and killed her dog by trapping it in a heated oven.

Teofilo Falaniko Jr., 20, is charged with three counts of first-degree burglary, second-degree burglary and animal cruelty in connection with the crime, which happened Oct. 22, according to Dillon police reports.

The bond set $50,000 Dec. 12 in Dillon County was for the animal cruelty and second-degree burglary charges Falaniko faces. A circuit court judge had to set the bond for his first-degree burglary charges.

Turner said police are trying to determine who specifically came to police first with the information that led to the suspects arrest first in order to come up with a fair way to give the reward if the suspect is convicted.

South Carolina law states that a person who tortures, torments, kills or inflicts excessive or repeated pain on an animal faces felony charges, 4th Circuit Deputy Solicitor Kernard Redmond has said. If convicted, that person can receive a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine. At the least, a person would have to serve 180 days in prison.

Update 9/17/09:  A tipster has received the $2,500 reward PETA offered last fall after someone broke into a Dillon woman’s house, put her small dog in the oven, propped a chair against the oven door and cooked the dog alive.

  (Photo courtesy of Dillon County Detention Center)

Teofilo Falaniko Jr., 21, was sentenced to 11 years in prison and three-and-a-half-years probation after pleading guilty to two counts of second-degree burglary and one count of unlawful treatment to animals.

Falaniko was originally charged with first-degree burglary, second-degree burglary and animal cruelty in connection with the crime, which happened Oct. 22, according to Dillon police reports.

Police said Falaniko already was in jail on two other burglary charges when he was charged in this case.

They said Falaniko told them the dog bit him, which is why he placed in the oven during the burglary.

The tipster, whose identity is being withheld, overheard Falaniko bragging about his crime and contacted authorities.

Falaniko admitted to ransacking Bonnie Bowens’ Owens Street residence while she was at church, putting her pug, Penny, inside the oven, turning it on and propping a chair against the oven door so she couldn’t escape.

When Bowens got home that night, she noticed her front door kicked in. She did not go inside the home; instead, she called police. When they arrived, they say they found her house broken into and vandalized, and noticed the chair propped against her oven door. When they opened the door, they found Penny dead.

Bowens said she’d only had Penny for about two-and-a-half months before she died. Penny was her first pet, and Bowens said she loved her like a child.

Update 3/25/10:  Falaniko has been sentenced to 11 years in prison and three-and-a-half-years probation.

Falaniko pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree burglary and one count of unlawful treatment to animals in Darlington County.

Reference:

SC Now