Indianapolis man accused of killing family dog, assaulting wife in front of children

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (May 4, 2015) - Indianapolis Metropolitan Police are searching for a man suspected of killing his family’s dog in front of his children after a heated argument with his wife.

According to IMPD records, Michael Clark, 39, got into a loud argument with his wife late Sunday morning outside their apartment at the Westpark Townhomes on the city’s west side.  Clark’s wife told police she and her husband were arguing about their dog, a white Bichone Frise, digging in the trash.  She said Clark walked away from her and went inside the apartment.

Police say a Bichon Frise, like the one pictured here, died after being slammed to the floor during a domestic disturbance

Police say a Bichon Frise, like the one pictured here, died after being slammed to the floor during a domestic disturbance

The couple’s 16-year-old daughter told officers her father came upstairs to the bedroom, picked up the little dog by its back legs, and slammed its head down onto the floor.  She said Clark left the room and the dog crawled under the bed.  When the daughter picked up the dog, it was still breathing but would not move.

When Clark’s wife confronted him about hurting the dog, she says he pushed her down on a couch and held her down by her neck.  When their 14-year-old son tried to intervene, she says Clark shoved him away.  Clark’s brother was eventually able to convince him to let his wife go.  A police report said the incident left visible marks on her neck, but she declined medical attention.

Clark then left the apartment and his wife gathered the injured dog and their three children, ages 16, 14 and 3 into the car.  During the car ride to the police station, she says the little dog died in the arms of one of the children.

“His wife is very traumatized, the children are very traumatized,” said IMPD Officer Chris Wilburn.  “They lost their family pet and now they’ve witnessed an assault on their mother by their father.”

Clark’s wife told investigators her husband has a prior history of domestic violence against her.

IMPD Detectives were still trying to find Michael Clark as of Monday evening.  His wife and children were staying at a different location for their safety.