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San Juan man ordered to stand trial for allegedly cutting dog's throat
A San Juan Island man accused of cutting his dog’s throat — and of assaulting a neighbor who tried to take it to a veterinarian for treatment — will stand trial in early June on a series of charges, including animal cruelty.
On Friday, Rory M. Wilcox, 22, pleaded innocent in San Juan County Superior Court to one count of first-degree animal cruelty, a Class C felony; and to one count each of fourth-degree assault and second-degree malicious mischief, both of which are gross misdemeanors. He was released on $5,000 bond. Trial is scheduled to begin June 6.
Wilcox is also prohibited by court order from having contact with his dog and from having any other pets in his possession pending the outcome of the trial. His attorney is Charles Arndt of Coupeville.
According to court documents, Wilcox allegedly cut his dog’s throat with a knife about two weeks ago after trying without success to give it away. A neighbor, after learning of the dog’s injuries, had placed it in her van to take it to a veterinarian when Wilcox intervened.
Prosecutors claim Wilcox used a large rock to smash a window, grabbed the woman by the wrists and pushed the dog out of the van. He reportedly fled the White Point Road neighborhood in a kayak when the woman called authorities.
Officers retrieved the dog from Wilcox’s father during an investigation of the altercation later that day.
The dog’s injuries, according to Sheriff Bill Cumming, were not life-threatening and it has been treated by a veterinarian. Someone at the Wilcox home reportedly used dental floss to suture the dog’s neck wounds, according to court documents.
Wilcox, accompanied by his father, surrendered to authorities the next day. He was released at that time on $5,000 bail pending an appearance at last week’s arraignment.
If convicted of the felony, Wilcox would face maximum penalties of five years in prison, a $10,000 fine, or both. The misdemeanors carry maximum penalties of up to a year in jail, a $5,000 fine, or both.