DETROIT – A Detroit man accused of torturing a small dog as part of ongoing abuse and harassment of his ex-girlfriend is facing several charges.
Julius Holley, 55, has been charged with one count of second-degree home invasion, one count of first-degree killing/torturing of animals, one count of larceny in a building and one count of stalking.
Holley is accused of breaking into his ex-girlfriend’s home and taking her Yorkshire terrier mix dog, along with other items from the house. Officials said Holley then sent his ex-girlfriend videos of him beating and torturing the dog.
The dog was left in a bucket next to a house and was taken by Michigan Humane for protection. In Michigan, someone who tortures or kills a pet with the intent to cause mental suffering or distress to another person, or exert control over a person, could face a felony charge punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
“Animal abuse is cruel and sadistic. It is also a crime that is often associated with other serious criminal activity, including domestic violence and abuse,” Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said. “Law enforcement and Michigan Humane know that victims of domestic violence are often reluctant to leave a dangerous situation for fear of having to leave their pets behind. I want to thank the Detroit Police Department and Michigan Humane investigators for their prompt attention to the victim’s calls for help. Their swift action likely prevented even more horrendous violence. "
Michigan Humane offers a Safety Net pet fostering program for people who need a safe place to temporarily house their pets. If you need help, or are willing to volunteer to take foster animals in those situations, should call Michigan Humane at 866-648-6263.
“All too often pets are used as weapons to control victims of domestic violence. There are many victims here and the collaboration between Michigan Humane and the Attorney General’s office represents our commitment to ensuring justice for all of them. If find yourself in this situation and need help - we are here for you,” said Matt Pepper, President and CEO of Michigan Humane.
Anyone with information regarding Holley should contact the Detroit Police Department at 313-586-5800.