NEWARK, N.J. (CBS Local) — Police in New Jersey have arrested a 17-year-old male from Newark and have secured warrants for two additional suspects wanted in connection with what they call a “horrific case” of animal cruelty that took place on June 5.

The three suspects are accused of beating a dog to death and setting it on fire, police said Monday.

“I commend detectives from the 6th Precinct for identifying those responsible for the outrageous torture of this defenseless animal,” Newark Public Safety Director Anthony Ambrose said in a statement.

The incident allegedly happened as residents in the vicinity of Columbia Avenue and Plymouth Street were awakened at 3 a.m. by a group of young people knocking over garbage cans and damaging cars.

In the morning, residents found the group had also damaged cars and discovered a dog in the vicinity had been beaten to death and set on fire, police said.

“I applaud those area residents who immediately contacted police when they discovered the fatally injured dog,” Smith said. “Everyone has a right to feel safe in our neighborhoods, people as well as pets.”

The arrested 17-year-old faces third-degree charges of arson, animal cruelty, conspiracy and criminal mischief, authorities stated.

Kamal Loyal, 22, and a 15-year old female, both of Newark, who have also been identified as suspects, are being sought on the same charges.