A Hollister man accused of animal cruelty for throwing a dog to the ground during an argument had his preliminary examination vacated and is set for an arraignment in early April, according to court records.
A preliminary examination had been scheduled for March 6 – when Judge Steven Sanders would have decided if there’s enough evidence for a jury trial – but the parties vacated it and will move ahead with proceedings while headed toward a potential trial.
The arraignment is set for 9 a.m. April 2 at the San Benito County Courthouse.
Police on Aug. 8 arrested Daniel Leon, 22 at the time, on suspicion of animal cruelty. The district attorney’s office charged him on suspicion of felony cruelty to animals on Sept. 6, according to court records. Leon was arraigned Oct. 15.
If convicted, Leon could face up to three years in prison.
He is represented by public defender Greg LaForge.
According to a Hollister Police Department report on the matter:
On August 8, 2019, about 10:27 a.m., Officer Jon Martinez was called to a family disturbance in the 100 block of McCray Street. Officer Martinez learned the argument was regarding “Buddy” – the family’s three-month-old puppy.
During the investigation Officer Martinez learned that Leon was arguing with another family member. At one point during the argument he picked up the dog and threw it to the ground. The dog’s left side was injured.
Officer Martinez had Animal Control officer’s assess the animal’s condition and they confirmed the leg had been seriously injured. Animal Control officers rushed “Buddy” to a veterinarian’s office. Leon was arrested for felonious animal cruelty.
“Buddy” was thoroughly examined and X-rayed. The tests revealed he had no broken bones, but did have extensive soft tissue damage to his hind end and left side of his body. He stayed at the veterinarian’s office overnight and was released to Animal Care Services. “Buddy” was on pain medication and bed rest at the time of the report. He is expected to make a full recovery.