by: Kerry Kavanaugh Updated:
GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. - A Sugar Hill man is accused of shooting and killing his neighbor’s dog.
"He was underneath the porch up there,” Patrick McCloud said.
McCloud said he was checking on 5-year-old black lab mix Mountain when he found him under the porch with a gunshot wound to the face.
"You could recognize it was Mountain. It just had the hole and all the blood,” McCloud said.
He said the blood trail also went across the street to the home of 49-year-old Orry “Buddy” Burton. According to a police report, Burton told officers, “If it did happen, it would be because he was eating my chickens."
Burton declined an interview with Kavanaugh, but his friend Candee Store said on several occasions, Mountain had been loose on Burton’s property harassing his chickens.
"It would have been like the head was in the mouth, and he had him completely by the neck and he was going right and left,” Store told Kavanaugh.
She said the dog was at it again Tuesday.
"All of a sudden, that dog dropped a chicken, and he was coming at Buddy. He wasn't coming at Buddy in a friendly kind of way," Store said.
That's when she said she heard a gun go off. Police said Burton told them a different story.
"My understanding was the dog wasn't aggressive to him at all,” said Gwinnett police Cpl. Ed Ritter.
According to the police report, Burton said “he did not feel threatened” and that the dog was “wagging its tail."
"It's animal cruelty. It's just wrong," McCloud said.
Police charged Burton with animal cruelty. They also seized the .44-caliber gun he allegedly told officers he used to shoot the dog. Police said they will conduct a necropsy to match the bullet to Burton's gun.