Snowmobile Hits Brittany Spaniels, Drives Away In Front of Owner

Posted at 12:04 PM, Feb 25, 2014
and last updated 2014-02-25 12:23:18-05

FRUITLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (Feb. 25, 2014) – One dog was killed – another seriously injured – after the DNR said a snowmobile struck the animals in Muskegon County then drove away from the scene.

The DNR said the incident happened Sunday evening, February 16th along Simonelli Road in Fruitland Township.

In a news release the DNR stated, “At approximately 7:30 p.m. two Fruitland Township residents were at the end of a driveway while snow was being cleared and mail was being retrieved from a mailbox along this lightly traveled rural road. Two vehicles were visible at the end of the driveway with tractor lights illuminating the road at the time of the incident.  Two Brittany Spaniels, owned by one of the residents, briefly ran into the gravel roadway and were returning to the drive when a lone snowmobile approaching from the north, traveling the center of the roadway at a high rate of speed appeared. The snowmobile continued at high speed striking both dogs within twenty feet of the owner and witness. The suspect vehicle did not slow or brake prior to or after the collision.  One dog died on scene after being thrown 114 feet, and the second dog required emergency care and surgery in Grand Rapids with veterinary bills totaling more than $6,000.”

The snowmobile was last seen at the intersection of Simonelli and Lakewood Roads.  Investigators are looking for a dark mid-to-late 1990s Polaris snowmobile.

The DNR said, “This snowmobile may have left the Berry Junction Trail or the City of Whitehall just prior to the incident and may have been returning to Fruitland or the Laketon Township area at the time of the crash.”

If you have any information, you are asked to call 1-800-292-7800 or Muskegon Silent Observer at 231-72-Crime.

This is the second dog death investigation in Muskegon County’s Fruitland Township this year.  On Monday, FOX 17 news reported that two dogs were found dead near an elementary school.  You can read more about that story here.