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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (July 16, 2015) — A central Indiana family is wondering who would steal their puppy, kill it and leave it in someone’s front yard. That’s what a detective with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) says happened to a northwest side couple this month.

“I don’t think whoever did this understands that they took a piece of my heart from me,” said Kati Aufderheide.

Morpheus (bottom dog) with Michonne and Kari
Morpheus (bottom dog) with Michonne and Kati Aufderheide (Photo courtesy of Smiling Dog Photography)

Aufderheide, her husband Erik and four-legged baby Michonne are all feeling a void that is deep, the gruesome death of their 9-month-old Pit Bull/Labrador mix Morpheus. They desperately want to know who went to those lengths.

“Absolutely. Morpheus was a part of our family. I feel like I’ve lost a family member, that’s how important it is to both Erik and I,” Aufderheide said.

Sometime after midnight July 2, the Aufderheids let their pets out as they normally would. At some point, the dog disappeared, never to be seen until a neighbor from a subdivision nearby called to say the body of Morpheus was lying under a tree.

Michonne (left) and Morpheus (right)
Michonne (left) and Morpheus (right)

“Someone came on to our property and took him from us. According to the vet, that did the necropsy, had him for about six to eight hours before they killed him,” said Erik Aufderheide.

The necropsy is leading the veterinarian to believe Morpheus was shot.

“The emotional involvement in this for this family is more than you can know,” said Detective Theresa Redmond with IMPD.

She admits this has been one of the more difficult cases to investigate.

“All I need is somebody to come forward, tell me what they saw, what they heard, or what they know so that we can move forward and have some closure,” Detective Redmond said.

There is reward money available for information that leads to an arrest and conviction through the Hamilton County Humane Society, which is where Morpheus and his sister Michonne were adopted from. They, too, want this solved quickly. If you know anything about who did this, you can call Detective Redmond at 317-327-1431. You can also stay anonymous and call Central Indiana Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS (8477).