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GUILTY CA - James Abernathy for beheading dog, Santa Ana, 2002

Discussion in 'Recently Sentenced and Beyond' started by Casshew, Jun 5, 2004.

  1. Casshew

    Casshew Former Member

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    A La Habra man who beheaded his German shepherd was convicted Thursday of animal cruelty, a charge that could send the third-striker to prison for life.

    A sanity hearing is scheduled to start Monday in Orange County Superior Court for James Andrew Abernathy, 42, who says he was insane in January 2002 when he killed his dog, whom he had named Marie in honor of his girlfriend.

    Deputy Dist. Atty. Heather Brown said anger, not insanity, drove Abernathy to beat his dog with a golf club, shove a stake through her heart and then decapitate her with pruning shears.

    He did those things, Brown said, "all because his girlfriend … had broken up with him."

    After the trial, Morrissey said his client was a diagnosed schizophrenic who was not on medication when he killed his dog. The prosecutor contends Abernathy is faking his symptoms

    Although felony animal cruelty carries a three-year maximum sentence, California law allows prosecutors to seek a life prison term for a defendant's third felony conviction. Abernathy was convicted twice in 1986 for assault with a deadly weapon.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/custom/showcase/la-me-shepherd4jun04.story
     
  2. blueclouds

    blueclouds Former member

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    But someone else who rapes a 9 month old gets 2 years....
    That's good justice!
    (no offense to the above crime intended. Beheading a dog deserves supreme sentence too)
     
  3. Casshew

    Casshew Former Member

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    Hi - the beheading of the dog is not what is drawing the long sentence... it is that it is this guys 'third strike'
     
  4. Amraann

    Amraann Former Member

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    Bluecloud....
    I swear I was going to post a similair comment...

    This guy is obviously violent and sick in the head (not to be confused with legally insane)
    So he needs to be in prison for life ...les the next beheading be a person.
     
  5. ja1

    ja1 New Member

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    If he was that angry at his girlfriend and did that to the poor dog, can you imagine what he would do to his girlfriend?

    ja1
    ----------------
    My oppinion
     
  6. blueclouds

    blueclouds Former member

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    :doh: :doh: :eek: guess I didn't read thoroughly... still 3 strikes is 3 strikes. I would be a little more sympathetic if he's in jail for life because he smoked a joint.
     
  7. Arielle

    Arielle New Member

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    Pruning shears? I have trouble cutting small branches with the things. I can't imagine skin, muscle, and bone!
     
  8. Watching you

    Watching you New Member

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    I hope this guy does get put away for life. Aside from the fact that I am an animal lover and have a special affinity for German shepherds, I believe this jerk is a a real danger to society. I doubt anger management courses could touch his problems. Anyone who can beat an animal and drive a stake into its heart and hack off her head with pruning shears is a sick, dangerous person. He wouldn't get within 100 feet of my children or my pets.

    I wish I hadn't opened this thread. Now I'm sick.
     
  9. Casshew

    Casshew Former Member

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    SANTA ANA, California (AP) -- A man who beheaded a German shepherd he had named for his girlfriend was sentenced Friday to 25 years to life under the state's three-strikes law.

    James Abernathy, 43, was convicted in June of felony animal cruelty for killing the dog, named Marie, after a fight with his girlfriend.

    Abernathy would have faced a maximum of six years if not for two prior convictions in 1986 for assault with a deadly weapon.

    "The community is much safer after the judge's ruling," said Deputy District Attorney Heather Brown.

    Defense lawyers claimed Abernathy suffered from schizophrenia and psychotic delusions. The judge, however, ruled he was sane at the time of the January 2002 violence.


    http://www.cnn.com/2004/LAW/10/08/dog.killing.ap/index.html
     
  10. Jeana (DP)

    Jeana (DP) Former Member

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    Hasta La Vista ahole!
     
  11. Dark Knight

    Dark Knight New Member

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    I'll second that. I see no reason for cruelty or killing of animals to be anything less than a felony, similar to the punishment they'd get if it were a person. Pets are an extention of the family, too, if they are treated like they're meant to be treated, anyways.
     
  12. miles_draken

    miles_draken New Member

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    I agree that the streets are safer without this lunatic walking around. However, I do not believe that cruelty against a pet of any kind should be considered the same as crime against a human being. I am not condoning any mistreatment of animals. If this man had no prior convictions or history of such craziness, then there could be no way to sentence him for this one crime of animal cruelty. It is sick and I don't believe in mistreating anyone, whether they have two legs or four, but we can't start treating animal cruelty and assault on people with the same level of recourse. I accidently ran over a dog once, and even though I felt horrible about it, I didn't get drug in to court and charged with vehicular manslaughter. If I'd ran over a person I'm sure I would have been. I'm glad this guy if off the streets, and I'm sure I'm gonna hear back from some of you die hard animal activists on this, but I hope some of you will get the jist of this.
     
  13. lisafremont

    lisafremont An open mind shouldn't mean an empty one!

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    Miles, the accidental running over a dog is NOT what this creep did. His was a deliberate and wanton act of cruelty. He had a long list of priors and was sentenced under the Three Strikes law. And in fact, that is at issue with this case. It sickens me to think that overturning the three strickes law would result in putting this guy back out on the street. The point is that anyone who would do what he did has no problem hurting people and has.

    The Three Strikes law should not be used against non-violent, petty criminals, IMO.

    Personally, I favor a One Strike Law for people who molest children. I don't see why they should ever breathe free air. EVER. And then Megan's law is unnecessary.
     

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