The Denver Post is reporting that Texas church shooter Devin Patrick Kelley previously had an animal cruelty charge in southern Colorado. Witnesses say he beat a dog with his fists, and Kelley was cited for animal cruelty by El Paso County Sheriff’s deputies on August 1, 2014.
The incident happened at a mobile home park or campground where Kelley once lived. Witnesses describe a young brown and white husky-type dog running loose, when Kelley ran up to the dog and jumped on top of it, holding it down with his knees. He began punching the dog with a closed fist about the head and neck. When the dog worked himself free, Kelley then grabbed him and threw him to the ground. He finished the attack by grabbing the dog by the neck and dragging him away. During the attack, neighbors say they could hear Kelley yelling while the dog yelped and whined.
When the deputies showed up, they judged the dog to be undernourished, as they could feel his ribs. They removed the dog from the home and took him to a vet for treatment.
Kelley says he was simply trying to control his dog when he began acting aggressively toward another canine. He denied having hit or dragged his dog.
El Paso County Judge Daniel Scott Wilson heard the case and ordered Kelley to pay restitution and other fees. After he paid a total of $448, Kelley’s charges were dismissed on March 31, 2016.
As is often the case with people who end up committing violence against people, Kelley also was violent toward an animal. The Animal Legal Defense Fund says people who have harmed animals are five times more likely to harm humans than those who haven’t. They draw an important link between animal cruelty and domestic violence, and provide great advice with lots of resources on the page linked above.
Doggies.com and breeders.net send their condolences to Sutherland Springs, as well as to all of those whose lives have been touched by animal cruelty and lethal violence.
Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!