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Teen charged in dog’s death

Staff Writer

A 14-year-old is facing charges in connection with the death of a dog.

At approximately 12:30 p.m. Monday, officers with the Troy Police Department responded to an animal cruelty call in the area of Rose Circle, off Knox Street.

On Wednesday two petitions were signed at the Pike County Juvenile Probation Office, charging the teen, whose name can not be released because of his juvenile status.

Sgt. Benny Scarbrough, public information officer for the Troy Police Department, said the incident resulted in the death of one dog and minor injuries to another dog. The injured dog was taken into protective custody by Animal Control officers.

Officials would not discuss how the dog was killed.

"We investigated this case just like any other offense," Scarbrough said. "You can rest assure we’ll be following up on it.

"Situations like this are taken seriously by the Troy Police Department."

He also said officials are charging the 14-year-old with a misdemeanor, although a bill signed into law last year, does allow some animal cruelty offenses to be felonies.

Under Alabama’s Pet Protection Act, a person commits the crime of cruelty to a dog of cat in the first degree if he or she tortures the animal with the intent to inflict intense pain, serious physical injury or death.

Cruelty to a dog or cat in the first degree is a Class C felony and is punishable by a jail sentence of up to 10 years and a fine of up to $5,000. Cruelty in the second degree is a Class A misdemeanor and is punishable by a jail sentence of up to one year and a fine of up to $2,000.

One of the key reasons for the bill’s passage in 2000 was Gucci, a mix of Husky and Chow breeds, that was seriously injured by teenagers in Mobile. In May 1994, Gucci was hung from a tree, doused with lighter fluid and set afire.