An Indiana man was in jail Thursday, charged with killing a couple’s dog by placing it in a hot oven, authorities said.
Police allege Joel Clark, 37, was on house arrest and staying with friends Christina Kelley and Richard Smith when he killed their Miniature Pinscher, Zane.
They confirmed Clark was being held at the Marion County jail in Indianapolis. He is charged with killing a domestic animal and torturing or mutilating a vertebrate animal, reports the Daily Mail.
Prosecutors offer no motive for the crime and Kelley and Smith both say there was no argument before Clark allegedly killed the pet May 17.
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Around 3 p.m. that day Clark told Smith he killed the animal. He was visibly drunk and Smith dismissed the comment as nonsense. Not long after, another dog at the couple’s home walked past Clark and he allegedly said, “I can take care of that dog, too.”
The comment concerned Kelley who began looking for Zane, according to the Indy Star.
She found the small dog’s body in the bottom of a trash can about 30 minutes later.
After finding the dead animal, the couple ordered Clark from their home.
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The next day Kelley and Smith buried Zane’s body in their backyard. Later that afternoon Kelley found dog hair and a dog’s toenail on a cookie sheet that had been left in her oven. She called the police and dug up the dog’s body.
Veterinarians at Purdue University examined the body and determined the pet died of “thermal pulmonary injury,” meaning the animal succumbed to intense heat. The necropsy on the animal also found that the dog’s whiskers were burned and that it had burn marks on its legs and feet, according to The Associated Press.
Clark is also charged with escape for violating the terms of his house arrest after he was forced out of his friends’ home. Those terms stem from a previous conviction of resisting law enforcement.
Clark’s attorney, Carey Donovan York, could not be reached for comment.
He is scheduled to appear in Marion Superior Court Wednesday for a pretrial conference.