MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – A group of Good Samaritans stopped an enraged man from killing a black Labrador Retriever on Sunday in South Beach, according to the Miami Beach Police Department.
Witnesses said that the man, who police later identified as Louis Sepulveda, was smashing the dog’s head and neck with the tail gate of a white Dodge Ram pickup truck near Lummus Park, on Ocean Drive and 13th Street. They also said they saw the man choking the dog with a leash and punching the black Lab.
Officers reported that Sepulveda, 51, told them “he was going to kill the dog, because he had it coming to him!”
Several witnesses, including Alabama tourist Derrick Childrey, rescued the dog and detained Sepulveda, who told officers the dog had attacked him first.
“I was sitting at Finnegan’s Way on Ocean Drive watching football, when I saw the commotion,” said Josh Meir, a Miami-Dade County resident. “I ran over and took the videos and checked on the dog.”
Officers arrested Sepulveda, who remained at the Turner Guilford Knight Corrections Center on Monday.
At his arraignment, Judge Gisela Cardonne Ely told Sepulevada that she found probable cause to charge him. She advised him that he could not have contact with any animals. “Is that clear?” Sepulevada interrupted the judge saying, “Yes, but before you render your judgement . . .” Ely stopped him. “Just listen,” she said.
Records show Sepulveda faces an animal cruelty with intent to injure or kill felony charge and has a history of aggravated battery cases in Miami-Dade County going back to 2013.
Flora Beal with Miami-Dade Animal Services said they are in the midst of a court process to make sure the dog, whose name is Roy, does not return to an abusive owner. She said Roy is quickly making new friends and is full of love and he is happy.
“He is a little timid right now because he is in a new environment,” said Beal.
Roy will eventually be available for adoption, according to Miami-Dade Animal Services.