A man from Georgia was sentenced to four years of prison, and six years of probation, for burning his brother’s pit bull with a blow torch. He then set the dog house on fire after barricading the pit bull inside.
This shocking tale of animal abuse happened in a suburb of Atlanta in May, 2015. The man responsible for the abuse on his brother’s pit bull was finally sentenced this week.
— AJC (@ajc) August 11, 2016
Caleb Lanier, 23, was having some kind of “simmering dispute” with his brother before the attack, according to FOX 5 Atlanta. While his brother and his sister-in-law were out of the house, Lanier procured a blow torch and cornered the pit bull, named Royalti, in her dog house.
The animal abuser then barricaded the pit bull inside the small structure.
Once the pit bull was trapped, Lanier began to push the blow torch through small opening and cracks in the side and top of the dog house, pressing it to the dog’s skin. Either he got bored of the method he was using or he simply felt like adding some variety to his heartless attack, but he then set the dog house on fire, keeping the pit bull trapped inside.
WSB-TV reported that the full extent of Lanier’s abuse caused the pit bull to suffer burns over roughly 60 percent of her body.
“Lanier repeatedly touched the open flame of a [ blow torch ] to a dog’s body while the [pit bull] was trapped inside a dog house located in the backyard of Lanier’s home,” Cobb County District Attorney Vic Reynolds told the media, according to Chattanooga Times Free Press.
“Lanier stuck the torch through a crack at the top of the dog house,” Reynolds continued. “The [pit bull] suffered burns on her face and over 60 percent of her body before managing to escape.”
Veterinarian Regan Burford, the doctor that first treated the pit bull after her rescue, testified that he hadn’t expected the dog to live.
GUILTY: Judge Sentences Man to 4 YEARS In Prison After Tried To Light His Dog On Fire – https://t.co/WD6OVn4y7B pic.twitter.com/r2rnNrcsfh
— Fido4Ever (@fido4e) August 12, 2016
“Royati should never had survived the abuse she endured or the agonizing treatment she fought through to survive,” he told WSB-TV. “She remains a silent victim to an unimaginable act of malice, malicious torture, abuse and disfigurement.”
Lanier had little to say throughout the trial and it appears he decided not to testify on his own behalf.
Although the abuser’s brother and sister-in-law were not home when Lanier decided to attack their dog, the pit bull was removed from their care. It’s possible that the reason the dog was seized had to do with the fact that Lanier’s family was at court, during sentencing, trying to get the judge to believe that Lanier is really a good man that is no danger to anyone.
It is unclear which members of the family testified on his behalf, their names were not revealed to the press.
Psychologist Dr. Maya Gupta greatly disagreed with Lanier’s family, according to WSB-TV. She testified that animal abuse tends to point to a violent personality hiding beneath the surface, especially the kind of abuse the pit bull suffered.
“There’s a 70 percent chance they will commit other crimes in that time span,” Dr. Gupta testified according to the publication.
— East Cobb Patch (@EastCobbPatch) August 12, 2016
Lanier was found guilty of felony animal cruelty (for the damage done to the pit bull) and second-degree criminal damage to property (for the damage done to the dog house of the pit bull), according to the Daily News.
Prosecutors were asking for eight years, but something his family said must have spoken to the judge, because he lowered the amount of jail time from eight to four. Although, he did tack on six years of probation.
“This is one of the worst cases of torture and suffering of an innocent animal our animal-abuse unit has seen,” Cobb County Assistant District Attorney Sherwin Figueroa told FOX 5 Atlanta about the pit bull abuse case. “This Defendant has lashed out against his own family in addition to committing this deviant act.”
Dr. Burford has since adopted the pit bull and changed her name. She’s no longer known as Royalti. Instead, the pit bull has had her name changed to Sweet Potato Fry.
The veterinarian told WSB-TV, however, that the pit bull is going to have a lifetime of health problems to look forward to.
How many years do you think Calib Lanier should have received for the malicious torture of his brother’s pit bull?
[Photo by ontebeoteg/AP]