A Savage man faces animal cruelty and torture charges after allegedly trying to bash his dog's head in with a hammer.
Citing a criminal complaint filed by Scott County prosecutors, the Savage Pacer reports that police were called to the house of Rudolph William Poppe, 71, a little after 7 p.m. on July 12. The caller—a neighbor—told police that they heard yelling and the sound of a woman screaming coming from Poppe's house, then saw Poppe pull his family's golden retriever outside, telling the neighbor he had to "put the dog out of its misery" as he grabbed a large hammer.The neighbor said they pleaded with Poppe to take the dog to a vet to be put down, then ran and called 911.
When police arrived, they found the dog lying on the home's front steps, a bag over its head, struggling to breathe. Animal Control officers rushed the animal to an emergency vet, but the animal had to be euthanized shortly before 9 p.m.
Police say Poppe resisted arrest and claim he later told them the dog was old, could barely walk, and had just defecated all over the floor. Because of that, police say, Poppe decided to kill the dog.