Man Charged With Beating, Choking His Dog to Death

A Walton County man has been sentenced to one year in jail for felony animal cruelty.

Anthony Ryan Huenergardt was sentenced by Judge Kelvin Wells in DeFunial Springs to one year in jail followed by felony probation for beating and strangling to death his Rottweiler named Bella.

The crime took place in May of last year. Huenergardt’s neighbors had called the Walton County sheriff’s office after they heard the dog crying out in distress and pain. Deputies went to the home, where the suspect had moved and found the dog dead.

A necropsy was performed at the University of Georgia. Charges were then filed. In addition to the jail term and probation, Judge Wells ordered Huenergardt to undergo psychological evaluation and treatment and pay costs of the overall investigation to Alaqua Animal Refuge in Freeport.

The judge also stipulated the defendant was prohibited from ever owning or residing with domesticated animals.

In addition to the Walton County Sheriff’s Department, the Office of the State Attorney for the First Judicial Circuit and Alaqua Animal Refuge all took part in handling the case.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Mike Location: pc on Apr 24, 2012 at 05:51 AM
    Romney tied his sick dog to the roof of his station wagon for 12 hours and drove to Canada! It's against the law to do this to an animal in Massachusetts, yet, he was not charged with animal cruelty. Looks like if you are rich, the justice system works better for you.
  • by Mark Location: PC Beach on Apr 22, 2012 at 12:11 PM
    Death of the dog is not required, if the dog was aggressive subdue him. A year in jail is not enough, who or what will anger this menace again enticing him to kill.
  • by Donnie Location: Freeport on Apr 22, 2012 at 09:00 AM
    He stood up to his dog. And they throw him in jail? This is what liberals are doing to our country. Free the Walton County One.
    • reply
      by DBC on Apr 23, 2012 at 07:09 AM in reply to Donnie
      How in the heck do you draw that conclusion??!! Stood up to his dog? What a ridiculous thing to say!
  • by An animal lover on Apr 22, 2012 at 07:11 AM
    Thank goodness there is something good that comes from this, there is money coming back to Alaqua to try to help and save those lost animals that are suffering and need a home! Adopt a pet from this wonderful organization today!
  • by Anonymous on Apr 21, 2012 at 02:03 PM
    That man should suffer as bad as the poor dog did.......i hope he rots in jail
  • by Anonymous on Apr 21, 2012 at 02:03 PM
    That man should suffer as bad as the poor dog did.......i hope he rots in jail
  • by beach guy on Apr 21, 2012 at 01:49 PM
    Im just glad to see a judge with the guts to send an animal abuser to jail, it seems most of the time they get a fine or something meaningless.
  • by jackie Location: youngstown,fl. on Apr 21, 2012 at 06:38 AM
    hey now, what in the world. an eye for an eye, his one year in jail isnt enough. he should get same treatment in jail from buba,s0G. SOME PEOPLE DONT DESERVE PETS.
  • by DBC on Apr 21, 2012 at 05:20 AM
    Let the punishment fit the crime!! The POS!!!
    • reply
      by I agree on Apr 21, 2012 at 02:24 PM in reply to DBC
      I agree 100% with you and the punishment does not come close to fitting the crime. I'm sickened by monsters like him!
  • by Anonymous on Apr 21, 2012 at 04:49 AM
    Ane we allow doctors to kill unborm babies, where is the justice in all that. We care more about the life of an animal than those of a human. This country is a sad place to live in.
    • reply
      by Gamine on Apr 21, 2012 at 07:42 AM in reply to
      Then what you should do is fight for what you believe in, instead of posting an unrelated subject on this page. What happened here is a tragedy and thank God the man will spend some time behind bars. The unfortunate trickle down effect of animal abusers is often they move next to humans. We are all God's creatures and abuse on any living thing is unjust.
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