Who is Michael Busico? Utah man sets ex-girlfriend's dog on fire 'in retaliation to their failing relationship'

A Facebook post by the Salt Lake County Animal Services shows the timeline of how the dog was found, taken to Advanced Veterinary Care in Millcreek and reunited with its owner


                            Who is Michael Busico? Utah man sets ex-girlfriend's dog on fire 'in retaliation to their failing relationship'
Michael Paul Busico has been arrested for allegedly stealing his ex-girlfriend's family dog, setting it on fire and leaving it on the side of the road (Tooele County Sheriff's Office)

SALT LAKE COUNTY, UTAH: Michael Paul Busico, 40, has been arrested and booked into Tooele County Jail and is accused of allegedly stealing his ex-girlfriend's family dog, setting it on fire and leaving it on the side of the road. As per reports, he is facing charges of torture of a companion animal, criminal trespass, theft and arson.

Busico was taken into the country jail on Tuesday after the incident was reported by the Salt Lake County Animal Services. Police had received an alert that a dog was set on fire, near 9500 West. Officers arrived and the dog, who was later identified to be a four-year-old female Red Tick Heeler named Dixie, was rescued with burn injuries on her face and body. The abused animal was taken to the local veterinary hospital, where it was diagnosed with second-degree and third-degree burns to her head, pelvis, hind end, belly, and mouth, as per reports.

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Who is Michael Busico?

People who saw the horrendous incident take place described the accused to the police as a White man who had a shaved head approximately 6 feet tall, who was wearing a fluorescent green shirt with an orange stripe and drove a green Toyota Tacoma truck, as per reports. The police received a call from the family who recognized their hurt dog on the news as well as recognized the suspect description to be Busico.

The Facebook post by the Salt Lake County Animal Services also shows the timeline of how the dog was found, taken to Advanced Veterinary Care in Millcreek and reunited with its owner. The owner told investigators that she believes that it was her ex – identified as Busico – who had stolen the family's pet "in retaliation to their failing relationship." She had also said that the accused was there with her dog when she had earlier left the home, and when she returned, neither were at the house.

While there isn't much information out about Busico, who is from West Valley, an affidavit revealed, "Through the investigation, it was found that [Busico] was in a dispute with the mother of the victim over $1,200 dollars and a past relationship that had ended. Mr. Busico specifically targeted his ex-girlfriend's daughter's dog." The affidavit also reportedly revealed that when officers had found him at his relative's home, Busico had attempted to run but was caught by 100 yards. An officer, speaking of the case, speaks to what Busico was trying to do saying, "From my training and experience, I believe that Mr. Busico was targeting the victim's animal to directly intimidate and threaten her and his ex-girlfriend."

As for the hurt animal, the Facebook Post had posted an update saying that while the dog has been reunited with its owner, it is still in critical condition. The statement said, "The dog's outcome remains uncertain at this time. She is currently on fluids and pain medication."

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