SYCAMORE - A Cortland man allegedly threw a Chihuahua against a wall during an early morning domestic dispute, killing the animal, police said.
Juan R. Chavez, 46, of the 100 block of Dogwood Street in Cortland, was charged with felony domestic battery and animal cruelty, a Class 4 felony. If convicted, Chavez could face up to three years in jail and fines up to $25,000.
According to DeKalb County court records, Chavez was arrested on Monday, Aug. 16 following an incident which occurred about 1:45 a.m. Monday morning.
Cortland police responded to Chavez’s home shortly before 2 a.m. on Monday for reports of a domestic disturbance, records show. The victim called police after driving to a nearby Mobil gas station.
A teenager in the car was holding the dead dog in her lap, according to police reports. The victim told police Chavez had been drinking alcohol and was pounding on the bedroom door at a home in the 100 block of Dogwood Street. The Chihuahua began barking and Chavez allegedly grabbed the black and brown dog and threw it against the bedroom door, killing it. Police say he also shoved the victim into a dresser.
Cortland police returned to Chavez’s home and said they attempted to make contact with him, reports state. Police could “hear him inside talking and he refused to answer the door,” reports state.
When police finally entered the home, Chavez told them nothing had happened, according to reports. When asked about the dog, Chavez told police it came into the bedroom and he then made a pushing motion with his hand, reports state. Police again asked him what he did to the dog, and Chavez reportedly told them he can do “Whatever the [expletive] he wanted.”
Chavez was arrested and taken to the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office.
Chavez was convicted of domestic battery in an unrelated 2018 incident. He pleaded guilty to that misdemeanor domestic battery charge on March 23, 2018, records show, and was sentenced to 18 months conditional discharge and ordered to attend drug and alcohol treatment court and attend a class on domestic violence.
Chavez appeared before a DeKalb County Circuit Court Judge on Monday. His bond was set at $25,000. If he posts bail, Chavez is also ordered by the court to be on an electronic alcohol monitor. He’s next scheduled to appear for a hearing on the charges on Friday at 1:30 p.m. at the DeKalb County Courthouse.