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Diversion granted for convicted Yorkie killer

Becky Campbell • Jan 7, 2013 at 7:43 AM

Criminal Court Judge Robert Cupp said Monday he’ll be criticized for granting judicial diversion to a Gray man who tortured his family’s Yorkshire Terrier to death, but given the man’s efforts to better himself it was the right thing to do.

Dustin Ricky Harrell, 22, 1178 Old Stage Road, Gray, pleaded guilty last year to one count of aggravated animal cruelty, a Class E felony that carries up to two years in jail, and asked the judge for diversion.

After months of delays to obtain a background check on Harrell from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, he was finally sentenced to 18 months under judicial diversion.

Read the full story on the Johnson City Press website.

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