Texas man accused of strangling, dumping dog in trash can

Jacob Luna

SAN JUAN, Texas — A South Texas man is accused of strangling a dog to death and then dumping the animal’s body into a trash can, authorities said.

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According to Hidalgo County Jail online booking records, Jacob Luna, 21, of San Juan, was arrested on Thursday. He was charged the following day with theft, cruelty non-livestock animals, criminal trespassing and tampering with evidence with the intent to impair a corpse., online records show.

Police said that Luna was arrested after the San Juan Police Department received a report of animal cruelty, KRGV-TV reported. The dog had been missing since April 13, and its owner reviewed her home surveillance video footage and turned it over to police, according to the television station.

During an interview with police, Luna allegedly confessed to taking the dog, an 11-year-old pug named Max, and strangling it before throwing the animal’s body into a nearby trash can, KVEO-TV reported.

“The video shows an individual unlawfully entering her property, aggressively handling the dog in a manner that suggested harm, and then removing the animal from the premises,” San Juan Police Chief Leandro Sifuentes said in a news release on Thursday, according to KRGV.

By the time of Luna’s alleged confession, a garbage truck had already collected the trash in the area, the television station reported.

Police were unable to determine a motive for Luna’s alleged actions. Sifuentes added there was no connection between Luna and the owner of the dog.

According to Hidalgo County Jail Records, Luna was released after posting bail on Saturday.

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