A North Carolina judge ordered a Fort Bragg soldier to keep a photo of the eight-month-old puppy he intentionally drowned in his wallet as part of his sentence for felony animal cruelty.
According to the FayObserver, Cumberland County Superior Court Judge Jim Ammons, ordered John Burrow, 24, on Tuesday to keep a picture of the puppy in his wallet while on probation for two years. In November 2015, Burrow tied the puppy named Riley’s feet to his snout with military parachute cord and tossed the defenseless animal into the MacFayden Pond in Fayetteville. Riley’s lifeless body washed up to shore and was discovered on January 2, 2015.
“I want you to remember Riley the way Riley was in full life,” Judge Ammons told Burrow. “I don’t do this lightly. What you did was horrible, absolutely horrible, and there are consequences to pay for that… We have way too many cases right now, and I don’t know the cause… It’s frustrating, but it also makes me hope that maybe the public is getting the message that animals need to be treated humanely.”
The sentence also requires Burrow to spend 30 days in jail and spend 100 hours of community service cleaning out cages at the Cumberland County Animal Control. In addition, Burrow is banned from owning any pets for the next five years. The conviction also includes 20 days in jail for not providing Riley with proper treatment for the pup’s injured leg while he was alive.
As to motive for the puppy’s torturous death, Burrow told authorities the Labrador and German shepherd mix continued to escape from their yard, and Burrow was not able to pay for veterinarian care when the dog became injured. Standing in court, Burrows apologized stating he accepted responsibility for his mistakes and had been extremely stressed during that time because Riley had a broken leg and he didn’t have the money to pay for surgery.
As reported however, the couple had reached out to the public with a GoFundMe page to raise the $2,500 for the dog’s surgery, but repeated lies of the dog dying or running away made donors uncomfortable . A charge of accessory after the fact is pending against Burrow’s wife, Kelsey.
Rest in peace Riley.
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(Photo: Screenshot via booking photo and KtlaNews)