In Greensburg, Pennsylvania, an Irwin man whose newly adopted puppy suffered a cruel torturous death will not serve anytime in jail, reports CbsLocalNews.
Jason French pleaded guilty to strangling his three-month-old puppy named Apollo because the pooch wouldn’t stop barking. On Friday, Judge Megan Bilik-Defazio sentenced French to 7-23 months in jail, but immediately paroled him and ordered French to court-mandated inpatient health treatment. According to French’s defense attorney, his client suffers from paranoid schizophrenia.
In November 2015, police arrived at Jason French’s home on First Street after a witness saw him kicking a black object and then digging a hole. Authorities found the puppy’s body. French, 33, told police he strangled the 30-pound Labrador retriever, Apollo, with his bare hands and that he “had to do it because he wouldn’t stop barking.”
Police reports indicate French showed no remorse for killing Apollo and went on to describe, “it took me three hours to strangle the dog. You wouldn’t think it would take that long with a dog that size.”
Candy Nelson, president of Animal Friends of Westmoreland, where French adopted Apollo, stated their organization had done an extensive background check on French, his family and his residence before placing the pup. Because of mental health privacy laws, no issues showed up during their due diligence.
As French left the Westmoreland County Courthouse amid a group of animal rights supporters, he said, “I’m very sorry for what I’ve done, and yeah, I did love my dog.”
For now, he must agree to inpatient treatment while on probation, pay $300 in restitution and is not allowed to own or be with any pets during his probation period. Once that is over, French once again can own a pet. Surely there is a need for a National Pet Abuse and Cruelty Registry.
Rest in peace Apollo; you barely received any justice.