EVERETT, MASS. (WHDH) - A man accused of beating his girlfriend’s dog to death in Everett was released on $150 cash bail after pleading not guilty to an animal cruelty charge in Malden District Court on Tuesday.
Steven Severino, 31, beat the small dog Monday, breaking its jaw and causing other injuries, according to Everett police.
Prosecutors say several neighbors heard the dog yelping as well as the sound of what they believed was the dog getting thrown against a building.
Police say the animal abuse happened near Severino’s apartment on Hoyt Street and they found his girlfriend screaming hysterically as he held the dog.
According to a police report, Severino stated that he has been trying to get the dog to “like him” because the dog constantly tries to bite him and doesn’t like to be around him.
He said he took the dog, Coco, for a walk, but the dog got off the leash, and he found the dog inside a nearby apartment building.
“Don’t take it out on the poor dog, he didn’t do nothing,” one neighbor said.
However, prosecutors say kids in the area heard the dog being beaten and recorded the sound of it yelping with their cell phones.
People who live in the area say they’re shocked by the arrest.
“He’s a very nice guy, very easy to talk to never ever saw him hurt an animal,” one woman said. “This is a surprise to us.”
In addition to the $150 bail, Severino was ordered not to interact with animals without supervision.
An autopsy has been scheduled to determine the dog’s cause of death.
Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria issued the following statement on Severino’s arrest:
“I am shocked and saddened by the death of this animal. We all know that dogs love us unconditionally and are the truest of friends. Behavior like this will not be tolerated in this city and will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
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