Buster The Boxer Foils Burglary

Buster tried to stop the bad guys.

When his home in St. Paul was burglarized, the 9-year-old boxer fought and wound up getting stabbed.

He suffered more than nine wounds to his chest, face and shoulder. His teeth were kicked in. His jaw was left exposed.

Sometime Thursday morning, at least one person broke into the home in the 1800 block of East Maryland Avenue while everyone but Buster – and two other furry companions – was gone. The burglar got in by breaking a kitchen window, said Brandie Wagaman, 16, who lives there.

When her father, Larry Wagaman, returned home that morning from a trip to Fleet Farm, he found blood throughout the house, Brandie said. Buster was found in his kennel in the basement.

“My dog fought them all through the house,” she said. “He pretty much saved our house. If he wasn’t here, they would have took more.”

Guns and Anoka County Corrections Department shirts were taken, said St. Paul police spokesman Howie Padilla. The shirts are tan and have department patches on each sleeve. Under one patch is an American flag.

Padilla noted that wearing one of the shirts to impersonate a law enforcement officer would be illegal.

Julie Smith, Brandie Wagaman’s mother, said a laptop and a necklace were among other belongings stolen.

Police haven’t determined if more than one burglar was involved.

Two other dogs – another boxer and a miniature pinscher – were at home at the time of the burglary, Brandie Wagaman said. Neither of those dogs was injured.
Buster was taken to the University of Minnesota, where he was treated for his wounds. He underwent surgery on his mouth Monday at Life Care Animal Hospital of St. Paul.

“He will recover,” Smith said.

In St. Paul, reports of residential burglaries are up compared with last year. As of Sept. 30, there were 1,973 reports, according to police. In 2010 at that time, there were 1,793. In 2009 and 2008, there were 1,650 and 1,794, respectively.

“It’s horrible to know

Brandie Wagaman, 16, with Buster the boxer. The dog was stabbed at least nine times during a break-in last week. (PIONEER PRESS: RICHARD MARSHALL)
someone was in your house,” Smith said.

A fund for Buster has been set up at Wells Fargo Bank at 1379 Phalen Blvd., Smith said. It’s called “Buster’s Fund.”

Those with have information are asked to call investigators at 651-266-5616.