Hyrum Long In October, Hyrum Long and his daughter, Susan Johnson, were arrested after police found a dog buried alive in their backyard. The dog, Molly, who belonged to Johnson, had been bashed over the head with a hammer by Long in an attempt to kill the dog.

In January Long pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree animal abuse, a misdemeanor.  The original charges of felony aggravated animal abuse and animal abuse were amended to the single misdemeanor charge.

Today Judge Rick Knapp sentenced Long to to 120 days in jail, with two years of formal probation and 100 hours of community service to follow. In addition, Long was forbidden to own, control or possess any animals.

Knapp also called the situation appalling and said, “I would not empathize with anything about your situation at all, what you did was monstrous and barbaric.”

“It was not my intent to hurt nobody,” Long said. “I apologize for all I did. I have no animosity towards nobody.”

“There’s no disputing that the case, on its face, is horrific,” said Long’s defense attorney, Donald J. Watt, who explained that Long grew up at a time when pet owners euthanized their animals without veterinarians.

“That’s what was done in those days,” he said. “He is not an evil person. He did something that he felt needed to be done.”

Yeah, I guess in the old days when you had a sick dog that showed long-term malnutrition, hadn’t eaten for most of a week and had a skin disease that had went untreated for more than a year you would just bash it on the head with a hammer then bury it alive up to its neck then go out to enjoy a Chinese dinner. Hmmmm…. I never heard stories like that.

His lawyer argued to have Long sentenced to only community service rather than jail time because his wife was sick. Wouldn’t someone be worried he might try to take that situation in hand….. nevermind, won’t go there.

Anyway, he’s been sentenced and will do his time. Molly is in a better place now, I have to look at it like that or it will hurt too much to think of her last hours.

In December, Long’s daughter, Susan Johnson, pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree animal neglect before Washington County Circuit Judge Rick Knapp. She was sentenced to 90 days in jail, two years formal probation 100 hours of community service and cannot own any animals for five years.

I’m not sure justice was served but at least some time will be.  It’s better than many sentences I’ve seen handed down.

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