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Stevenage teen pleads guilty to swinging chihuahua by leash over his head

Once the video was uploaded to Facebook, authorities were notified.
Once the video was uploaded to Facebook, authorities were notified.
Hertfordshire Police Department

Alfie Loft, 19, pleaded guilty on Monday to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal in Stevenage, England last week in front of a Hatfield magistrate court judge reported the Guardian.com. The incident occurred last Thursday after Loft had met a woman at a neighborhood pub, and she had asked him to take her chihuahua for a walk.

Unfortunately, it wasn't just a young man taking a dog for a walk. A video uploaded to Facebook showed four men walking along the sidewalk, and Loft repeatedly swinging the dog off the ground by its leash. One particularly disturbing part of the video showed Loft swinging the defenseless dog over his head.

District Judge Carolyn Mellanby accepted Loft's apology on Monday after the teen's attorney stated he was very remorseful and felt "humiliated" and disgusted with himself by what he had done and what had happened. He offered to write a letter of apology to the dog's owner.

"He does love dogs himself, although he doesn't own any," stated Loft's attorney.

Loft's attorney stated he was trying to encourage the dog to walk by pulling on its lead. When he lifted the dog off its feet, his three companions thought it was funny which Loft admitted just encouraged him to yank on the dog's leash more while swinging the dog around higher and higher.

The dog was not injured, but the owner told authorities the dog was definitely distressed and not acting normal.

Judge Mellanby banned Loft from keeping any animals for the next two years. She also sentenced him to a curfew, ordering him to stay home with his mother for the next 12 weeks between the evening hours of 9:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. He was fined $420 to be paid to the dog's owner, $143 to be paid to the court for costs, and $101 fine for a victim surcharge.

Watch the video by clicking here.

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