A 16-year-old Palm Coast boy captured on a pair of Snapchat clips repeatedly whipping a small, whimpering and yelping dog, was arrested at his B-Section home Monday and faces a felony charge of animal cruelty.
Another teen unrelated to the 16 year old was scanning through Snapchat items when he came across the videos showing the dog being beaten. He showed the videos to his aunt, who was disturbed enough to contact the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies reviewed the videos at the aunt’s house.
Deputies and the aunt’s nephews had no other clue beside the Snapchat videos’ user name. But the sheriff’s report notes that “the snapchat location was on and the location was pinging” to a specific address in Palm Coast. Deputies got there a little after 10 p.m., and spoke to a teen who acknowledged taking the videos of the beatings. The teen told deputies he’d been visiting his friend, who became frustrated when his friend’s dog defecated in his room instead of outside. That’s when the beatings took place.
Deputies located the 16 year old boy at his home , speaking to the boy–a student at Matanzas High School–and his mother. According to his arrest report, the boy said he has two dogs, a 1-year-old pit bull mix and a 7-year-old mix of unknown breed called Mr. Kush–the dog in the Snapchat videos. He told deputies that he normally disciplines his dogs with a belt. In this case, the dog would not relieve himself outside, instead heading for the 16 year old’s bedroom and doing so there.
According to a deputy who reviewed the videos, “The first video showed a small brown and white dog being grabbed and held to the ground as it attempted to run towards a black wire crate. The dog was loudly crying and the subject proceeded to strike it three times with a small thin strap. The dog cried again, loudly, as it was struck. The dog proceeded into the crate, which was then shut by the male. The dog appeared to cower in back of the crate as the subject continued to verbally scold it. The dog was also licking the area where it was struck, showing it was in pain.
“A second video showed the same subject and same dog in a different location. The subject was seen pinning the animal down by the neck and striking it with the same strap. The animal cried as it was struck, and was able to break free of the subject’s grip. As it escaped the subject, continued striking the dog. The dog bit at the subject as it attempted to escape, and the subject can be heard aggressively scolding the dog for the bite.”
Laughter is heard during one of the beatings.
Palm Coast Animal Control took custody of the two dogs and took them to Flagler Animal Hospital to be assessed.
“This is another great example of ‘see something, say something’ in action,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “We do not tolerate animal abuse in Flagler County. This type of behavior could be an early warning sign that something else is going on with this young man and often is how human abuse starts. I hope this is a wakeup call that his criminal actions will not be allowed and that he gets the help he needs. I would also like to say thank you to the young man who spoke up and saved this dog from further abuse.”