• Owner of dog killed in home invasion: 'It's not right'

    By: Natasha Chen

    Updated:

    CENTRALIA, Wash. - A homeowner is heartbroken after a home invasion that killed his dog. 

    Police said three men with a handgun forced open the door of a home in the 1200 block of Marion Street about 10:36 p.m. Thursday.

    Dustin Palermo said he doesn't know why he was targeted, but the men seemed to believe he had a lot of money. He said he and his girlfriend had won a few hundred dollars at a casino, but it was nearly a day before.

    The alleged intruders demanded money from the victim, Palermo, and his girlfriend, who were inside the home.

    "One of them said, 'We gotta go, we gotta go, we gotta go.' They ran off. I went outside looking for my dog, screaming, looking for 911 and looking for my dog, and I found my dog and she was dead," Palermo told KIRO 7. "It's not right that it happened."

    One of the intruders shot one of the victims' two pit bulls multiple times, killing it, according to Centralia police.

    Palermo said everyone loved his dog, Misty.

    “She’s gone. Can’t come back,” he said.

    Palermo also showed KIRO 7 how he tried to protect his girlfriend as he rolled a jar of cannabis on the ground toward the alleged robbers.

    He said to them, "Go. Take it. I don’t have anything."

    The men fled in a vehicle and remain at large.

    Palermo’s neighbor, Joseph, who would not give his last name, said he heard six or seven shots. He said he grabbed his brother’s gun and ran outside, but the robbers were already driving away.

    “They were in a bad, fast hurry to get out,” Joseph said, showing KIRO 7 the tire marks on the ground.

    He said he believes the car was a 1992 four-door Honda Civic.

    Palermo also mentioned that he grows medical marijuana for himself and another patient. They are allowed by law to keep 30 plants. He said they keep it under that number.

    Detective Patricia Finch, of the Centralia Police Department, told KIRO 7 these types of home invasions are rare in the city.

    Besides looking at the home surveillance footage, Finch said, “We're also looking at video surveillance from the casino that the two victims were at.”

    Police are looking into whether anyone saw Palermo and his girlfriend at the casino and followed them to their house to plan a robbery for the night after.

    Anyone with information should contact police. 

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