Lawrence and Douglas County

Lawrence and Douglas county

Lawrence man found guilty of animal cruelty after tying dog’s hind legs

January 29, 2013


A 23-year-old Lawrence man was found guilty of misdemeanor animal cruelty Tuesday in a bench trial in Douglas County District Court.

Byron Anthony Snowton was arrested Oct. 24 after animal control officers found a dog tied by its hind legs and unable to stand in a yard outside an apartment building in the 800 block of Michigan Street. The dog’s legs were bound with plastic ties used as handcuffs by military police, which Snowton said he possessed because of his service in the Kansas National Guard. Animal control officers took the dog to a local veterinarian and then to the Lawrence Humane Society.

Jennifer Stone, the staff veterinarian for the Human Society, testified Tuesday that the dog had suffered pain, swelling, and minor abrasions from the bindings but no permanent damage. The dog is currently in good health and in the custody of the Humane Society, she said.

Snowton testified that he left the dog temporarily to seek medical treatment after the dog bit him, leaving a wound that required 12 stitches on one finger. He said he first took the dog outside to calm it and bound its legs to prevent it from biting others while he was at the hospital. Later that evening, police arrested Snowton at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

Douglas County District Judge Michael Malone said Snowton was guilty because he had knowingly injured the dog by his actions, even if there was not malicious intent. A hearing on Thursday will decide sentencing and the future custody of the dog.

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Keymistress 5 years, 1 month ago

I fervently pray that the do not return the animal to the so-called owner. I think it has suffered enough at his hands, and hope he is adopted by someone who will give him love. Far too often animals are abused and no they have no alternative but to try and defend themselves. We are supposed to care for God's creatures and what this person did isn't even in the ballpark.

Lisa Medsker 5 years, 1 month ago

What scares me is the idea that this idiot will just go get himself another dog to abuse. I hope, too, that the dog is adopted by somebody responsible and caring, and that the abuse he went through at the hands of this owner hasn't made him fearful. Poor dog. :-(

Keymistress 5 years, 1 month ago

I agree. There are a lot of people who should never be allowed to own an animal.

introversion 5 years, 1 month ago

Did anyone inquire as to what was going on that caused the dog to bite him in the first place?

mae 5 years, 1 month ago

Exactly my thoughts. Secondly, you don't have a spare room or basement you can lock it in instead of outside? A dog owner is responsible not only for the neighborhood but also the dog. He didn't think some kid might wander up and try to help get the tie off his dog's legs and get bit? Idiot.

Lisa Medsker 5 years, 1 month ago

If the dog was not abused, and actually trained with compassion and sense, it would negate the need to "lock" the poor dog anywhere.

Ian_Cummings 5 years, 1 month ago

Snowton said the dog bit him while he was picking her up off of his bed. He did say he was annoyed with the dog because she had just torn some things up, but that the dog had not bitten him before. So, it's unclear what led to the bite.

Keymistress 5 years, 1 month ago

Maybe it was the WAY he picked the dog up!! Or what he did to the dog AFTER he picked it up!!

myop 5 years, 1 month ago

They absolutely should NOT return the dog to him. He deserves a loving, caring, safe home.

naturalist 5 years, 1 month ago

No matter what, please don't return this dog to him. He is obviously too stupid to care for another living creature.

patkindle 5 years, 1 month ago

i suppose this would be different if he was a rich college kid in a fraternity and the animal involved was a turkey??

bad_dog 5 years, 1 month ago

"He said he first took the dog outside to calm it and bound its legs to prevent it from biting others while he was at the hospital."

Nothing calms and prevents an animal from biting more than binding its legs and placing it outdoors where it could be exposed to human interactions. This guy missed his calling to a career in risk management.

Janella Williams 5 years, 1 month ago

The dog probably bit him because he was abusing it. People who abuse animals are sick, vile pieces of humanity. I say we do the same thing to him as he did to the animal.

nytemayr 5 years, 1 month ago

I believe the judge was in error on this one. There was no malicious intent. The person was injured and required medical care. The dog was not injured. The dog was discovered in distress but not in a life threatening condition.

I feel for the dog but I hope there is a judical review of this and the charges are dropped. Really this is a seriously BAD ruliing by a judge!

I know most of you will jump all over me but you don't want this to stand on the books. This ruling can be used for all sorts of mischief!-

asixbury 5 years, 1 month ago

Being an idiot is not an excuse. The dog obviously bit him because of something he did to provoke her. Whether or not it was intentional does not matter to an animal that reacts off of instinct. Being bit is absolutely no reason to tie the dog up with zip-ties. Like I said, being an idiot is not excusable when it comes to harming a innocent animal. By the way, there are no bad dogs, only bad owners.

bad_dog 5 years, 1 month ago

"By the way, there are no bad dogs, only bad owners."

I take that as a compliment ;-)

Louie White 5 years, 1 month ago

I agree. All these condemning comments are unfounded. If one wasn't there, one doesn't know what really happened. It's more likely he was telling the truth than not.

Jason Johnson 5 years, 1 month ago

Ban plastic ties! They're used for criminal acts!

Kevin Haislip 5 years, 1 month ago

you all are the biggest bunch of people haters i have ever seen . put the man down . save the crazy dog..

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