A father and son were arrested after they beat their neighbor’s dog to death with baseball bats in the backyard of their Merced, California, home Friday night.
The dog’s owner is asking how the two men could have done such a heinous act, which was all captured on surveillance video, but Sam and Tony Clendenin said they did so in self-defense when the dog tried to attack Sam while he was outside smoking a cigarette.
“I wasn’t expecting to see a 200-pound dog growling right in my face in the dark in my own backyard,” Sam said. “I should feel secure. It’s my property.”
Sam said he stood on the dog’s head to keep it from attacking, and shortly after that is when his father, Tony, can be seen beating the dog with a baseball bat.
Kimberly Saesee said she heard the cries coming from her German shepherd, Kuma, but by the time she got outside, her pet was already dead.
“That could’ve very well been a person. How do you beat something living? I mean he was like family to us. He pretty much was a person to us. How do you beat someone to death?” said Saesee, who hopes the two men go to prison for what they did.
Saesee – and authorities, who said the men gave conflicting accounts of what happened – don’t believe the men acted in self-defense and that they purposely and maliciously coerced the dog into coming into their yard before they killed him.
Both men are charged with cruelty to animals and conspiracy to commit a crime.