Brains from a three-legged pitbull? That’s just sick.
Florida authorities are powerless to prosecute a former animal shelter worker accused of performing sex acts on a dog because of a loophole in the state’s anti-bestiality laws — a development that has outraged animal activists.
While a Sunshine State law enacted last year prohibits sex with an animal, it doesn’t explicitly forbid oral sex with animals, the Tampa Bay Times reported Wednesday.
Now, animal advocacy groups are calling for an amendment to the law after the Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney’s Office reportedly declined to charge suspect Eric Antunes with animal cruelty for allegedly engaging in oral sex with his girlfriend’s three-legged pit-bull mix.
Antunes, however, does face child pornography-related charges after police said the Clearwater man allegedly admitted to downloading and viewing it on his computer, according to reports.
Rick Chaboudy, executive director of the Suncoast Animal League, told the Tampa Bay Times he wants Florida to “do away with the gray areas” in the anti-bestiality law.
“We need to close up this loose loophole,” Chaboudy said. “This is one of those crimes that you can’t possibly imagine that it goes on, but I’m sure at one point in time, somebody said the same thing about child pornography.”
Initially, an anonymous tipster told police that Antunes, 29, allegedly had child pornography on his computer, according to reports. That led them to discover six pictures of him engaged in alleged sex acts with the pit-bull mix named Ruby.
The alleged images were found on his cell phone, and he was arrested May 1, CBSMiami reported.
Antunes previously worked as a contract employee at the Pinellas County Humane Society and is the live-in-boyfriend of Katerina Williamson, who also worked as the organizations’ medical director, the Tampa Bay Times said. She reportedly resigned after his arrest.
Authorities said they do not have proof that Williamson was aware of her boyfriend’s alleged activities with her dog.
Assistant State Attorney Beverly Andringa declined to charge Antunes with sex with an animal because only one of the six photos found on his cell phone “would meet the strict criteria of the statute,” she told the Tampa Bay Times.
In addition, officials were not sure if that picture was taken before the new laws went into effect, potentially making the case difficult to prosecute, the newspaper said.
Williamson and Antunes declined to comment to the newspaper.
Twila Cole, the Humane Society’s director of development, told CBS Miami that Antunes “was never on the property working unsupervised.”
Another Humane Society employee, Eric Eagle, remembered Antunes as a “strange” man who never talked to anyone besides Williams, he told the Tampa Bay Times.
Despite Antunes’ odd behavior, Eagle added, he never thought his former co-worker had a different kind of affinity for dogs than most people.
“That is sick,” Eagle told the newspaper of the allegations. “I didn’t see anything like that.”
In follow-up visits, authorities found Ruby to be well cared for and in good health, according to reports.
Antunes’ arraignment for the child pornography charges is scheduled for July 2.
This guy definitely qualifies as a Florida CRAZY! Just disgusting…
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