Protesters show for hearing in juvenile dog abuse case

CLEVELAND, Tennessee (WDEF) – last week, there was a preliminary hearing for two juvenile suspects in the alleged beating and subsequent shooting of a stray dog here in Bradley County.

That preliminary hearing was delayed until today, and, just like last week, protesters showed up in support of the abused animal they named Angel.

“Justice for Angel. Justice for Angel. Justice for Angel.”

A show of support for an abused stray dog, while his alleged abuser was in court for his preliminary hearing this morning.

The public pleaded with the District Attorney to have one of the two suspects in the alleged beating of the dog to be charged as an adult.

Because of recent law changes, Steve Crump says that the case will remain in juvenile court. Protesters say it doesn’t mean the suspect can’t be behind bars for a long time.

Betti Gravelle / Director, Dixie Day Spay:
“That is the way the law reads. It certainly doesn’t change my sympathy level. It doesn’t change mine or anyone else’s desire that he could be, but we realize he can’t be tried as an adult. Even with juveniles, there’s still minimum and maximum sentences, and we are pushing for the maximum, even as a juvenile.”

According to some of the protesters, there are more videos of the suspect reportedly abusing other animals. It’s why Betti Gravelle of Dixie Day Spay believes someone this depraved should not be free on bond.

“I think he’s damaged beyond repair. I don’t think he will ever be safe to be on the streets. I don’t think anyone here does. I don’t think he will ever be safe with an animal. Personally, I don’t think he will ever be safe with a child. It is indicative of the person that he is. And, I have never seen a 16-year-old that damaged and that cruel and that heartless change and become a decent human.”

Each suspect has had his hearing separate from the other.

Because it’s a juvenile case, no one in the Bradley County District Attorney’s office could tell us when the next hearing is going to be.

Whenever that is, Gravelle and the animal lovers in Bradley County are going to keep showing up in support of Angel.

In Cleveland, Scott Koral. News 2 Now.

Categories: Bradley County, Featured, Local News