Anthony Rawson is all smiles in a January photo moments after he adopted his Beagle from a Licking County shelter.
Three months later, humane agents say they were called to his apartment in east Columbus after a social worker received complaints about sounds of an animal in pain coming from his room.
"We had the information of witnesses coming forward saying that they heard the noises of the dog crying, (in) stress, heard sounds of the animal being thrown against the wall," said Kerry Manion, Humane Agent for Capital Area Humane Society.
Agents say Rawson treated his dog like trash. They charged the 31-year old with two counts of "prohibitions concerning companion animals.
"That means, "No person shall knowingly torture, torment, or needlessly kill, or commit an act of cruelty against a companion animal."
Humane agents say Eunice's injuries were so severe they had no other option but to put the dog down. “The dog couldn't walk. It had a fractured spine (and) it was clearly suffering. The only humane thing to do (was to) alleviate the animal's suffering," explained Manion.
In Ohio, animal cruelty is a misdemeanor and carries a maximum of $1,000 fine or six months in jail.
Kerry Manion calls the law weak and argues it should be treated as a violent crime punishable by a felony. “The public needs to recognize that when these types of situations occur, that it's a violent act and it should be treated and punished as such.”
Rawson didn't return 10TV’s call for comment about the case.
The Capital Area Humane Society says it receives 6,000 animal cruelty complaints a year.