(NEWS RELEASE) Charleston, SC – In a tragic case of animal abuse, Michael Waring of North Charleston was convicted on one count of Felony Ill Treatment of an Animal for starving his American Staffordshire-mix to death in January 2015. Waring, 43, is a single father of two children. Charleston Animal Society has not been informed as to the custody or welfare of Waring’s two children.
In January 2015, North Charleston Police and Animal Control were called to Waring’s residence and found two emaciated puppies and an adult male dog who had died. Evidence pictures show the dog died with his head in its own food bowl. “The evidence I saw was heartbreaking. It is clear that this animal used his very last breath to try and stay alive,” said Charleston Animal Society Director of Anti-Cruelty and Outreach Aldwin Roman.
Charleston Animal Society assisted in the case, by sending the dog’s body to the University of Georgia for a necropsy. This animal autopsy found the dog had just 0.3% body fat left in its bone marrow. A healthy dog has 59% fat in its bone marrow.
Waring pleaded guilty May 9th in court to one felony charge and was sentenced to three years in prison, which will be suspended, upon the completion of his serving one year in prison. After Waring is released, he will be on three years of probation. In the case of the two emaciated puppies who were also found in his home, Waring was convicted of two misdemeanors and fined.
“We are very glad he was convicted of a felony, but feel one year is not an adequate punishment for the pain and suffering he inflicted on his pet, who was found starved to death in a cage, in his home,” Roman said. “We all need to work together to increase the penalties for animal cruelty in South Carolina and encourage courts to take animal crimes seriously.”
This Did Not Have to Happen
Charleston Animal Society runs a nonjudgmental food bank for the public, Monday-Friday, 10am – 5pm. “We never want a family to go without food for their pets. Last year, we gave away more than 50,000 pounds of food to those in need,” said Charleston Animal Senior Director of Animal Services Pearl Sutton. Charleston Animal Society is located at 2455 Remount Road in North Charleston.
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About Charleston Animal Society
At 142 years old, Charleston Animal Society was the first animal organization in South Carolina and is one of the oldest in the Nation. It is also South Carolina’s leader in adoptions, spay/neuter, free roaming cat programs, fostering and research projects and has a nationally recognized Veterinary Science Initiative. For the third year in a row, Charleston Animal Society is South Carolina’s most honored charity.