Man faces investigation for dragging dog to death in Turkey’s south
The incident came to light after a video purportedly showing a van dragging a dog recorded by a local in Mersin’s Erdemli district emerged on social media.
The video, which was shared by the social media account of the Mersin Animal Protection and Ownership Platform, showed a Rottweiler puppy named “Lady” tied to the truck.
The Mersin Chief Prosecution Office has launched an investigation into the suspect, who is reportedly a teacher.
The suspect was detained by police but released after providing testimony.
The suspect said the dog had injured a chicken in his coop and added that his purpose had been to take the dog away from his land.
“I tied the dog to the back of my truck and did not notice it had fallen over,” he said in his testimony.
Meanwhile, the dog’s owner, Gökhan Özcan, and other animal rights activists have buried the dog.
“A teacher asked for one of my puppies because his house was left alone. I gave him a puppy in order to protect him. But he tied it to his car. I asked him to give my dog back but he refused and threatened me with a gun,” Özcan said.
Animal rights activist Semih İğdigül said they would keep monitoring the situation after the incident.
“A person tied a dog to the back of a vehicle and dragged it to death. The dog had an owner. It was a pet. It had an ID card. We are sick of such incidents. This incident will not end here. The perpetrator of this crime must be severely punished,” he said.
After a number of recent media reports on mistreatment of animals, Turkey’s Justice Ministry recently prepared a draft law enabling courts to jail for up to 4.5 years all those found guilty of killing and torturing both pet animals and stray animals.
People found guilty of killing endangered animal species will be given up to seven years in jail, according to the new draft.
The ministry has sent the draft early in January to related ministry departments across Turkey and demanded that their opinions be expressed within 30 days.
Previous Turkish law did not allow the jailing of people found guilty of torturing animals unless they are pets.