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Illinois man pleads not guilty to shaking and stepping on ten week old puppy

Coker has been charged with two counts of felony animal cruelty in the death and injury of two tiny puppies.
Booking photo

Barbara and Henry Mibbs allowed a convicted felon to live with them in their Delavan home after he was released from prison, but the no longer welcomed house guest faces two counts of animal cruelty to a companion animal for throwing a puppy on the floor and stepping on its head and brutally killing another one reported the

The family opened their hearts and their home to Stephen Coker, after he had served ten years in prison for residential arson and aggravated domestic battery, and for months the couple stated he had not been a problem, but are now reconsidering a prior situation of egregious animal abuse to another puppy.

On May 4, the Mibbs, who live at the 600 block of E. Fourth Street rescued one of their miniature pincher-terrier mix puppies from Coker after he allegedly shook, strangled, and stepped on the tiny pooch and threatened other members of the family. The puppy is currently at a veterinary hospital in critical condition according to the family.

According to the Pekin Daily Times, no one knows why Coker, 47, became so violent, but the family now has doubts about his past concerning an earlier incident with another puppy several months ago. At the time, the family thought another dog had killed a puppy from a different litter.

Coker has been charged with a Class 4 felony for animal cruelty and faces a maximum sentence of three years in prison. He is currently being held in jail in lieu of $25,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court on July 14.

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