Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Oklahoma: Michael Yager arrested on felony animal cruelty after police say he shot his wife's dog Jasper and let it slowly bleed to death on the living room floor

OKLAHOMA -- A Cushing man is being charged with animal cruelty and two misdemeanors after his wife told police he had drunkenly shot and killed their dog.

Michael Lee Yager, 45, is out on $10,000 bond after he was arrested Jan. 9 at his residence in Cushing, and could face a five-year prison term or up to one year in county jail as well as a $5,000 fine if convicted of the felony.

According to an affidavit filed in Payne County District Court, Yager's wife, Leslie, came to the Cushing Police Department and told an officer of the events leading up to Yager killing the couple's dog, Jasper. 

Leslie said Yager drank a "fifth of whiskey" (750ml bottle) while she was gone between 6:30-7:30 p.m. Jan. 9, and afterward tried to convince her to take him to the Buckhorn Bar in Cushing because "he wanted to go there and fight."

Leslie refused and said she was instead going to return a video rental. She saw him playing with a gun, which she took and hid in the couch while she was gone. When she came back, about 15 minutes later according to the affidavit, she found Yager lying in front of the door and Jasper lying on the living room floor in a puddle of blood. Leslie hid the gun a second time and Jasper was placed in a utility room.

The officer had Leslie draw a sketch of the residence and where she hid the gun, the affidavit reads, so he and other officers could go find Yager and the gun. The officers found Yager asleep on the couch and handcuffed him, during which Yager said shooting Jasper was an accident and he "was more upset about it than her (Leslie)."

Spent 9-millimeter shells were located on the floor, as well as a Glock magazine with 12 more bullets. The officer located the handgun where Leslie told him she had hid it again.

The officer writes in the affidavit that he found Jasper with a gunshot wound to the dog's head. Yager's explanation to Leslie was that he had been shooting at a box in the living room and accidentally shot Jasper in the process. The officer found evidence that the box had been shot.

Yager was also charged with misdemeanor counts of carrying a firearm while under the influence of intoxicating liquor and reckless handling of a firearm.

(STW News Press - Jan 17, 2017)