- Mississippi, USA -
In Defense of Animals, the international animal protection organization operating Hope Animal Sanctuary and Justice for Animals Campaign in Mississippi, announced that on November 18, 2022, Crystal Springs Municipal Judge Jeff Varas bound over DANIEL BERTHELETTE (pictured), to a grand jury to face animal cruelty charges for dragging his neighbor’s dog to death.
As the organization explained in a news release, BERTHELETTE was arrested by the Crystal Springs Police Department (CSPD) on September 14, 2022, “for wrapping a wire around his neighbor’s dog’s neck, George, attaching it to his truck, and dragging George to death.”
In Defense of Animals reports that witness Chris Wright testified that he saw BERTHELETTE driving in front of him, pulling a trailer and that he could see something from the back of the trailer. Mr. Wright said they appeared to be ears so he drove up further. BERTHELETTE had stopped and was trying to unravel the bailing wire around George. According to Mr. Wright, George looked at him and moaned. BERTHELETTE couldn’t get the wire loose, and when Mr. Wright asked him what he was doing, BERTHLETTE did not answer. Although Mr. Wright took something from his truck to cut George loose, BERTHELETTE got back in his truck, said: “I hate that fucking dog,” and drove off.
BERTHELETTE tried to dispose of George’s body in a city dumpster, but city employees stopped him. These employees later identified BERTHELETTE to law enforcement.
Crystal Springs Mayor Sally Garland personally launched an investigation with Public Works Director Russell Brewer to successfully identify BERTHELETTE.
Ms. Doll Stanley, In Defense of Animals’ Justice for Animals Senior Campaigner, attended court in support of justice and George’s guardians, the Bush family.
Mayor Garland was delighted that Ms. Stanley was in court and said: “We are a small city, we want word to get out and make the perpetrator famous. We are thankful In Defense of Animals is involved because we just don’t have that kind of network or resources. I have heard of Doll Stanley and I knew that In Defense of Animals does very good work. We need justice, so when I saw her there, I felt relieved because I knew something’s going to be done. We are mortified and our hearts are broken over the very idea that someone could tie a wire around a dog’s neck and drag him. No one should think that they can ever drag a dog and get away with it.”
In Defense of Animals said they will follow this case with the Bush family as they mourn the loss of their furbaby and recover from it.
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George’s photo via the Bush family.