A man accused of raping a pit bull puppy will spend five years behind bars in a Florida state prison. USA Today reports that James Guy Bull, 62, admitted to fondling and having sex with his 8-month-old puppy, Coco, at his home in Daytona Beach, Fla.
State prosecutors gathered evidence against Bull prior to his sentencing, including reports from two neighbors who witnessed him fondling his dog in front of his apartment several times, amidst “yelps and cries” from the abused dog.
The Daytona Beach News Journal reports that Bull’s neighbor, Dean Ray Gil, testified that he heard constantly heard the dog yelping and screaming. He went to see what was wrong with the puppy and, through a partially open apartment door, saw Bull having sex with the dog. When he realized his neighbor saw him molesting the puppy, Bull pulled up his pants and threw the dog on the ground.
Faced with two counts of felony cruelty to animals, misdemeanor animal cruelty charges and misdemeanor sexual activities involving animals, Bull pleaded guilty to avoid a trial. First Coast News reports that Florida State Attorney R.J. Larizza spoke to reporters after Bull’s sentence was announced on Friday. He stated that the facts of the puppy rape case were “incomprehensible and vile.”
“The defendant’s abuse of the helpless dog shocks the collective conscience of the citizens of the Seventh Circuit and beyond.”
Not only was the puppy sexually abused by James Bull, USA Today reports that court records show the puppy was “clearly emaciated” and chained to the front porch of his home when police were called to the scene. There was reportedly no water or food left for the puppy and her chain only allowed her to move about eight inches from where she was secured to the porch.
The News Journal reports that judge who handed down the sentence to Bull, Judge Leah Case, compared the rape and abuse of the puppy to “systematic and chronic child abuse.”
A New York City rescue organization is reportedly fostering the puppy and have renamed her Rose. After Bull’s sentencing, the News Journal states that there were cheers from a crowd of animal advocates who attended the sentencing in Daytona Beach. Many of those who attended to show their support for the abused puppy wore T-shirts that featured a photo of the dog and the words “Justice for Rose.”