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      Ex-wife of suspect reacts to Georgetown dog abuse case

      By Nikki Gaskinsngaskins@abcnews4.com

      GEORGETOWN, S.C. (WCIV) -- On Wednesday, Bobby Joe McConnell, 47, was charged with three counts of ill treatment of animals.{} The incident has shocked those who knew him.

      "We're devastated now. We're confused. We're angry. My children are just mortified. It's a bad situation," said an emotional Monica McConnell, the ex-wife of McConnell. "We'd just appreciate the respect to let us just get over this."

      Monica says she can't fathom why the father of her three children would ever want to harm their family pet Callie. The dog has since become known as "Dara."

      "I talked to Bobby last night briefly. He called and he said that he didn't do it, but that's all he said," said Monica.

      McConnell said little to a judge during a bond hearing Wednesday.

      "Do you have any questions about how to get out?" asked the judge.

      "Yes, ma'am. I don't really know what's going on with those three dogs," Bobby replied.

      Monica says Dara belonged to her daughter. She says{}another dog belonged to her mother.

      She's not sure who the third dog belonged to. Earlier this month all three were found with their legs and mouths duct taped and tossed into a canal, according to officials.{}Dara was the only survivor.

      "I don't know what to think. All I know is Callie got beat bad and Maddie is dead. Somebody did it," said Monica.

      McConnell's{}ex-wife says she only learned something awful had happened to her pets after seeing a story posted on-line.

      "Normally, when they get out, they would just run the neighborhood, whatever, and they'd come back, but her and Maddie didn't come back," she said. "I was furious because I was upset that who would do that to her because she's a good dog."

      As Dara recovers from her injuries, Monica says she hopes in time she'll be able to return the 3-year-old lab to her daughter.

      "We've been to see her and we played with her and she's doing good. We hope to get her back soon," she said.

      However, it's not clear if that will actually happen. At this time, the sheriff says this case is still under investigation.

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