Who, age What Where When Last Known Address
Ron Nick Allison, 19 Stealing a neighbor's dog beating it to death

Jonesboro, AR

Craighead County

June 8, 2003  
Matthew Harden, 18 Stealing a neighbor's dog beating it to death

Jonesboro, AR

Craighead County

June 8, 2003  
Type of Crime Other Crimes #/Type of animal(s) involved Case Status Next Court Date /Courthouse
Misdemeanor   a 5-year-old Chow Convicted  

Allison, age 19 and Harden, age 18, were convicted in the theft and beating to death of a 5-year old Chow named Pooh.  Pooh’s body was found on a barbecue grill and 2 paws were found in a resealable plastic bag, along with bloodstained paper towels, inside the grill.  Pooh’s head was thrown in a swimming pool at an abandoned residence at 1315 S. Main St.  The dog had been tied to a ladder and gutted.

The two faced up to 1 year in county jail and a fine of up to $1000.  Instead, Craighead County District Judge Ray Spruell sentenced them to 30 days in the county jail…with 29 days suspended.  They were also fined $550 each and ordered to complete 80 hours of community service and 1 year of supervised probation.

Jared Kemp owned the dog and was a friend of the 2 men.  Kemp had refused to get involved in some questionable activities with Allison and Harden and that is believed to be the reason the dog was killed.

Kemp found the dog missing the morning of June 9th, after he returned from his grandfather’s funeral.  The 50 pound dog was kept in a fenced in area behind his home.

Pooh was beaten to death with a shovel on June 9th at a Jonesboro apartment complex at 500 W. Elm St. according to investigators.  Harden had bragged that he had killed, cleaned, grilled and ate the dog.  The investigators found that the barbecue grill was never lighted and the dog was not grilled.

Arkansas is one of the few states that have no felony animal abuse laws.  Representative Buddy Blair introduced a bill that would have made heinous crimes Class D felonies punishable by up to 6 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.  The bill also proposed calling for mandatory psychological examinations for those convicted of cruel acts to animals.  The bill passed in the House but failed in a Senate committee.

For future animal cruelty cases that come before Judge Ray Spruell write him at the Craighead County District Court at 410 W. Washington St., Jonesboro, AR 72401 to encourage him to treat animal cruelty cases more seriously.

References:

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette The Bloomington Alternative AMCT Forum
The Animal Legal Defense Fund KATV