Lawrence man charged with animal cruelty, making threat

A Lawrence man faces felony charges after he was accused of killing a 10-week-old puppy and threatening a victim he shared the animal with, police said.

Michael L. Kewley is charged with felony animal cruelty and making criminal threats and misdemeanor criminal restraint, according to court documents.

Thursday night the victim arrived at the home she shared with Kewley in the 400 block of Hutton Circle and found the dog, possibly a Labrador mix, to be unresponsive, said Lawrence police spokesman Sgt. Trent McKinley. The dog had vomited and was showing signs of head trauma and bowel issues.

When asked what happened, Kewley told the victim the dog may have eaten broken glass, McKinley said, and when she tried to leave with the dog, he threatened her and damaged property.

Eventually the dog was taken to a 24-hour veterinary clinic in the Kansas City area where it died early Friday morning from what the doctor listed as “severe head trauma,” McKinley said.

Police were called Friday morning when Kewley and the victim argued again, McKinley said. He was arrested that morning and made his first appearance in court Monday afternoon, when he was officially charged.

Kewley’s preliminary hearing has been scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday. He is currently being held in the Douglas County Jail in lieu of a $7,500 bond.

A booking photo of Kewley wasn’t immediately available.