Franklinton couple mourns dog slain during break-in

Hank, the dog shot and killed during a Franklin County burglary. (Jim and Jamie Pearce)

FRANKLINTON, N.C. (WNCN) — When someone broke into Jim and Jamie Pearce’s home in Franklinton they took more than belongings from the couple — they also took their beloved pup, Hank.


The country house the two share was Jim Pearce’s great-great-grandfather’s home. The two lived alone, with just their two cats and Hank.

“We got Hank as a very small puppy, and we have no kids at this point, and we raised Hank like our kid,” Pearce said. “We made mistakes. He made us mad at times. I compare it to raising a child, but he was one of us.”

Tuesday afternoon, someone broke into their home.

“I was at work, and I got a phone call from my mom that first of all she asked me if I was okay,” Jim Pearce said. “I could tell she wasn’t okay. She was very distraught. I could tell something else was wrong and she let me know that it appeared they had shot our dog Hank in the hallway and she had found him laying there in a pool of blood.”

When he got home, what he saw was heartbreaking, he said.

“It was total disarray,” he remembered. “There was blood on the walls. A large amount of blood on the floor of the hall. One of the windows was shot out, bullet holes in several different places in the walls and then to add to that all of our stuff pretty much dumped on the floor.”


The couple adopted the German shepherd mix several years ago. Pearce works long hours as a firefighter, and Hank was the couple’s protector.

“You can replace material things but you can’t replace Hank,” Pearce said. “That’s what hurts so bad, and at this point in time our life has been ruined. There’s no other way to put it.”

The thief or thieves got away with four guns, ammunition and an iPad.

Franklin County deputies have charged Luis Hernandez-Cruz in connection with the crime. He’s charged with felony breaking and entering, felony larceny of a firearm and felony cruelty to animals by killing.

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