2 charged in connection with abuse of 9-week-old pit bull

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PITTSBURGH - Two people were arrested Tuesday in connection with the severe abuse of a 9-week-old pit bull, police said.


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Prosecutors said the puppy named Artemus was hit so hard that its tail was broken.

One of the suspects, Kamal Floyd, told Channel 11’s Alan Jennings that the entire situation is a big misunderstanding.

"We pretty much we will resolve it. We'll resolve it when we get down there. We really we didn't know nothing about (the abuse)," he said.

However, according to a confidential informant, Floyd was seen outside his Renwick Street home beating Artemus with a belt.

Pittsburgh police told Jennings that when they seized the pit bull last week, the puppy was terrified, her ribs were sticking out and she was missing a chunk of skin on her face.

According to the criminal complaint, Floyd told officers, “Yeah, I beat the dog with a belt. I paid $120 for it, and I'm going to beat it anytime I want.”

"Animal neglect or abuse will not be tolerated in Pittsburgh,” said Pittsburgh police Officer Christine Luffey. 

Artemus was taken to Animal Friends, where she had already gained some weight and is slowly learning to trust humans again.

In addition to Floyd, Luffey arrested Mary Ann Austin, who also lived in the house where the abuse allegedly took place.

Austin claimed the beatings were justified because the puppy bit her son.

Floyd also complained to police that Artemus would relieve herself inside the house.

Both Floyd and Austin were charged with misdemeanor animal abuse and taken to the Allegheny County Jail.

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