Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Man beat, stabbed pet dog at Auburn park, prosecutors claim

By Levi Pulkkinen, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

A 49-year-old Auburn man allegedly caught attempting to beat his dog to death with a rock is facing felony animal cruelty charges.
Filing charges earlier this month, King County prosecutors claim Stormy J. Gage bludgeoned his dog, Jewels, with a rock before stabbing the pit bull mix in the neck.
"The defendant was seen in the woods attempting to kill his dog by pounding the dog's head with a large rock," Deputy Prosecutor Gretchen Holmgren told the court. "When officers arrived, a very large amount of blood was found, as well as a knife."
At 3 p.m. Sept. 27, Auburn police were called to Big Bend Park after a witness reported seeing a man later identified as Gage beating the dog with a rock.
The witness told police he was scouting the area for a new fishing hole when he heard a rustle in the bushes nearby, according to charging documents. He then heard a "thwack" and noticed a Gage beating a whimpering dog with a rock.
Jewels managed to escape Gage briefly, according to charging documents. As the dog ran by, the witness confronted Gage, who allegedly said he was trying to "put it out of its misery" as it had been hit by a car.
Officers arriving at the scene found a large pool of blood and eventually located Gage standing over a Jewels.
"The dog was covered in blood and there was a large laceration on the right side of the dog's neck," Auburn Detective Michael Jordan told the court. An officer at the scene also noted a large cut to the dog's head and a lump on her right shoulder.
Gage claimed the dog had been hit by a car, the detective said. A veterinarian later concluded the dog's injuries were not consistent with a car accident.
Officers searching the area located a knife and a rock apparently used in the attack. Both were covered with blood and hair from the dog.
Animal control officers took Jewels to the Five Corners Animal Hospital in Burien, where the dog underwent emergency surgery. The dog's jugular vein had been cut and there was extensive damage to the dog's neck.
Now charged with one count of first-degree animal cruelty, Gage was jailed for two days following the incident but has since been released.

Update October 19, 2010 11:39am - The following article is from KOMO:
 
Man accused of beating pit bull pleads not guilty

An Auburn man charged with first-degree animal cruelty for allegedly beating his 8-year-old pit bull over the head with a rock and then slitting her throat pleaded not guilty in court Tuesday. But family members say the man was just trying to put the dog out of its misery.

Stormy Gage, 49, was released on his own personal recognizance after the judge ruled he wasn't a threat to society.

Gage was arrested last month after a witness claimed he saw the man repeatedly bludgeoning a dog with a rock near Big Bend Park on the afternoon of Sept. 27.

The witness reported the incident to the police, who arrived on scene and found the pit bull, named Jewels, with severe injuries to her head. The dog’s throat had been slit, and officers found a wood-handled knife hidden under some nearby brush.

Gage told police that Jewels had been hit by a car and he was only trying to help the dog "go peacefully," court documents said. However, investigators said a veterinarian later told police Jewels' injuries were not consistent with being hit by a car.

The dog was rushed to Five Corners Animal Hospital in Burien for emergency surgery to repair the neck injury, which included a severed jugular vein. The veterinarian also discovered a cancerous tumor in the dog's right-front leg.

Jewels survived the attack, but had to have her leg amputated because of the cancer.

After Tuesday's arraignment, Gage's wife told KOMO News Jewels needed vet care for very serious problems they just couldn't afford to fix.

"To take a dog or any animal into any vet, it's a minimum of $150," Iola Gage said. "We just don't have that. We're barely surviving with maybe $75 a week after I pay the bills."

When asked if there was a more humane way that Jewel's situation could have been dealt with, she replied: "There probably was, but again, it takes money and we just don't have it."

Animal control shelter Sgt. Brenda Dyrdahl says since the incident, Jewels has regained her spirit.

"She's happy, she's just so happy," Dyrdahl said Thursday. "She just likes everybody. She's a happy, happy, dog."

Those caring for her say the cancer will likely come back, but Jewels remains in high spirits and they hope someone will adopt her when she's eventually ready.

If convicted, Stormy Gage could face up to 5 years in prison.

3 comments:

  1. Do you know if Jewels has been adopted? she is not in the listings of available animals at King County Animal control.

    Thanks for the article and follow up.

    Frances
    Vashon

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Frances.
    As of this moment I have no further updates.
    The article did state that Jewels would be available for adoption 'when ready'.
    Presumably, she is still undergoing treatment and is not yet ready.
    I have a call into the King County Animal Services and am awaiting a reply.
    I will post any updates as soon as I receive them.
    Thank you for visiting.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Frances.
    As of this moment I have no further updates.
    The article did state that Jewels would be available for adoption 'when ready'.
    Presumably, she is still undergoing treatment and is not yet ready.
    I have a call into the King County Animal Services and am awaiting a reply.
    I will post any updates as soon as I receive them.
    Thank you for visiting.

    ReplyDelete

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