ATLANTIC - A motion to dismiss one of two charges against Jason Micheal Anderton, 29, of Atlantic has been denied. Anderton is facing charges of animal abuse and animal torture.
Cass County Attorney Michael Hooper said Monday that “the state’s argument was that it was a jury question, not a question for the judge to answer, and the judge agreed with us, so nothing is changed.”
No trial date had been as of Monday afternoon.
Anderton was arrested on Jan. 8 after two months of investigation after a report of a dead dog was brought to the Atlantic Police Department.
Charges - including Count 1 animal abuse and Count 2 animal torture, first offense, related to an incident on Oct. 30 - were filed on Jan. 5, and a warrant for Anderton’s arrest was issued. He was arrested without incident.
An order for arraignment was filed on Feb. 14, and Anderton’s attorney filed a motion to dismiss Count 1 Animal Abuse on Feb. 15.
Hooper filed resistance to the motion to dismiss, saying he felt the issue should be determined by a jury. A hearing on the request was held on Monday.
Court reports say Anderton, on Oct. 30, inflicted pain on the 1-year-old dog in a depraved and sadistic manner with the intent to cause prolonged suffering and death, beating the dog in the head, causing traumatic injuries and causing one of the dog’s eyes to be dislocated from the eye socket.
Anderton filed a not guilty plea on Feb. 28.
According to reports, a classmate of Anderton’s had been helping him out after he moved back into the community, and had placed two dogs into his care because he was living alone.
The first dog reportedly died of Parvo, and the second dog had to be taken to a vet shortly after it was placed in Anderton’s care. At the vet’s office the dog was found to have injuries that were “questionable in nature.” Later, Anderton told his classmate the dog had died, and that its body could be found in a plastic shopping bag under a trailer at Templeman’s Car Lot.
When the classmate found the dog’s body, it appeared to have been burnt, and she brought it to the police department to make a report.
During the investigation it was determined that the dog had been tortured, resulting in its death.
Anderton told police the dog had died of black mold, and that he placed the dog in the plastic bag and put it under a trailer.
The Atlantic Police were assisted in the investigation by the Humane Society of the United States, by providing resources and funding that allowed the APD to complete a necropsy exam and DNA testing that furthered the investigation.