Whitesburg KY

Man charged with stealing, abusing dog after breeder says it was hers to begin with

If you want to have a stolen dog bred for puppies, be sure not to take the dog back to where it came from for stud service. You should also make sure the dog isn’t already pregnant.

Those are the lessons a Smoot Creek man may learn if he winds up being convicted of the receiving stolen property and cruelty to animals charges filed against him by the Letcher County Sheriff ’s Office.

The charges against Christopher S. McClain, 32, of 1764 Smoot Creek Road, were filed by Deputy Sheriff Barry Engle after a woman said McClain showed up at her home with her missing and pregnant pit bull terrier she had been searching for all day. The woman, Naketa Adams, said McClain asked her about breeding the dog with other pit bull terriers she owns. When Adams said the dog was hers, McClain said he had traded medication for the animal earlier that day.

Engle arrested McClain at 8:45 p.m. April 8 after a warrant charging McClain with receiving stolen property valued at more than $500, a felony, and seconddegree cruelty to animals, a misdemeanor, was issued by Letcher District Judge Kevin R. Mullins. The warrant was issued after Engle obtained a sworn affidavit from Adams in which she described McClain’s showing up at her home with the stolen dog and the poor medical condition in which the dog arrived.

“He first tried to pass the dog off as his own dog,” the affidavit says, “but later claimed that he had traded medication for the dog earlier in the day. [McClain] would not identify from whom or where that transaction took place. The dog was covered in blood from having her ears cut and having been left to bleed for a long period of time while tied up on the back of a truck.”

Contiues the document: “[The dog] appeared to be in shock. Her eyes were bloodshot, she was trembling, and wouldn’t move much or eat or drink. Her muzzle appeared to have been taped as well. The dog was too old to have her ears clipped and was in serious danger of bleeding to death.”

Adams explained in the affidavit that the dog itself is worth approximately $250 and that one of her puppies would be worth another $250, plus the cost of shots and wormer.

McClain was still being held in the Letcher County Jail Tuesday. Bond is set at $50,000 cash. He is scheduled to appear at a preliminary hearing at 1 p.m. April 17 in Letcher District Court.

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