Humboldt city workers to face trial for animal cruelty

Dog allegedly beaten in Humboldt, Tennessee
Dog allegedly beaten in Humboldt, Tennessee(In Defense of Animals)
Updated: Jun. 8, 2021 at 12:49 PM CDT
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HUMBOLDT, Tenn. (WMC) - Two Humboldt, Tennessee city workers are set to face trial Wednesday for allegedly beating a dog to death in January.

In Defense of Animals says Bruce Lynn Pafford and James Johnson are charged with animal cruelty and a petition is calling for maximum sentencing if convicted.

They were arrested after a witness reported seeing the city workers killing a dog they had been dispatched to aid after the dog was struck by a vehicle.

In Defense of Animals explains:

“The dog was determined to have severe head injuries and was taken to the pound where the city shop is located. The two dog catchers removed the dog from the city vehicle with a catchpole, a device for handling unfamiliar dogs. Once clear of the vehicle, one employee unmercifully held the dog down with the catchpole while the other employee beat the dog repeatedly on the head with what was reported to be a shovel or pole.The dog, posthumously named Rain, was “yelping til (their) last breath” and that the sound of their crying was ‘horrifying.’”

Both Pafford and Johnson resigned from their positions days later.

“There is no excuse for an animal, injured or not, to be subjected to a cruel death. The defendants, Bruce Lynn Pafford and James Johnson, if convicted will be getting off lightly with a one-to-two-year jail term,” said Doll Stanley, In Defense of Animals’ Justice for Animals Campaign Director. “It is the mission of In Defense of Animals to spotlight egregious acts of animal cruelty to maximize the justice that tormented and tortured animals endure. There is no justification for the cruel treatment of animals in any society.”

Each is charged with aggravated animal cruelty, a one to two-year sentence depending on one’s criminal history, according to In Defense of Animals.

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