Kurtis White of Fort Lauderdale, Florida was arrested Thursday after he allegedly threw an artillery shell at a pit bull that had come into his yard, news sources report. The pit bull was later euthanized because of the severity of its injuries. White, 22, was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail on charges of animal cruelty. He was released the following day after bonding out on $2,500. The press did not say whether White had hired an attorney.
According to reports, the pit bull’s name was “White Boy” and it belonged to Kim Denson, who lives not far from White’s home. A witness reportedly told police that White Boy was a dangerous dog and had bitten neighbors in the past. It was not clear at press time whether anyone had filed complaints about White Boy in the past.
Reports say this latest incident occurred on July 7 in White’s backyard in the 1000 block of Northwest 26th Avenue. That day, White Boy escaped his home and went to White’s yard, where White keeps Patches, his female pit bull. White went outside and was reportedly confronted by a growling White Boy, who stood between White and his dog.
White apparently retreated back into his home, then left with another witness to tell Denson that her dog was in his yard. When White returned to his home, he allegedly armed an artillery shell and hurled it at White Boy. The resulting explosion hit and injured the dog. Denson reportedly witnessed White throwing the explosive device.
Following the explosion, White Boy was taken to the veterinarian for treatment. Reports say he sustained a broken leg and deep lacerations and needed a blood transfusion. Denson decided to put the dog down due to the severity of the injuries. White gave Denson $300 for White Boys veterinary treatment, reports say.
Police later confronted White about the incident. He reportedly said he only threw the artillery shell to scare White Boy away, not injure him. It was not immediately clear whether White had a license to own an artillery shell, which used to be used in wars but are now mostly used as high-powered fireworks. Old, unexploded WWII and Civil War artillery shells are still found on occasion.
Sadly, animal cruelty is an ongoing problem throughout the United States and South Florida. Earlier this year, Juan Herrera Diaz of Coconut Creek was arrested after he allegedly lifted his puppy, Princess, by her leash and let her fall to the ground, sources report. Diaz, 64, was booked into the Broward County Main Jail on charges of animal cruelty. His bond was set at $6,500. It is unclear whether he obtained legal aid.
According to reports, the incident occurred on January 1, 2013 near Diaz’s home in the El Rancho Seven mobile home park. Princess, a Chihuahua and Dachshund mix, was not cooperating with Diaz’s orders, so he allegedly picked her up by her leash and let her fall back to the ground. A witness saw the alleged act and called police, sources say. Diaz was subsequently arrested. Princess sustained a broken pelvis, but is reportedly doing fine.