Saturday, December 16, 2006

Ohio Man Shoots His Dog in the Head

This is not politics, but it does fall into the category of the endless human capacity for cruelty. And just to be absolutely clear, I'm talking about the crime, not the punishment. The punishment is ludicrous.

A man who shot his Great Dane in the head is allowed to reduce his sentence by dressing up as a dog.

Municipal Judge Michael Cicconetti, known for his creative sentences for low-level crimes, offered to cut Robert M. Clark's sentence Thursday to 10 days in jail if he wears a Safety Pup costume and visits the five elementary schools in Painesville, about 30 miles northeast of Cleveland. The mascot educates children about issues ranging from traffic safety to drug abuse.

Clark, 38, who lives outside the city, pleaded no contest to an animal cruelty charge and was sentenced to 180 days in jail for shooting his dog Bill.

Cicconetti suspended all but 30 days of Clark's sentence if he pays the Lake County Human Society for the dog's veterinarian bills. Then the judge offered to cut an additional 20 days if Clark dresses up as Safety Pup.

He was arrested July 3 after neighbors reported hearing the dog's cries and police found the injured animal. The humane society took the dog to an emergency veterinary clinic, but he suffered brain damage and had to be euthanized, the group said.

I don't claim to know what punishment would be appropriate for an act like this, but certainly dressing up like a dog doesn't begin to cut it. Maybe paying 25% of his yearly income to the Humane Society for the rest of his life?

Via ACSblog.

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