CAROLINE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Virginia man accused of shooting a hunting dog and removing it’s GPS tracking collar defended himself in a statement Sunday afternoon. The man claims his actions were “legal, justified, and necessary” for the protection of his family.
The dog’s owner called the Caroline County Sheriff’s Office to report that his dog had been shot and killed on Friday, Nov 22. The owner told authorities his dog was on an active hunt when the signal on the GPS collar suddenly stopped.
The owner said the signal stopped on the property of Adam Beck in the Chilesburg area.
According to authorities, the accused man and the dog’s owner had a phone conversation before deputies arrived at Beck’s home.
“There was apparent evidence discovered and the deputies remained on scene to prevent the destruction of this evidence,” CCSO said.
Deputies were able to obtain an arrest warrant for Mr. Beck and search his property.
“A felony animal cruelty warrant was obtained first and while obtaining the search warrant, Mr. Beck came out and was subsequently arrested without incident,” CCSO said.
During the search, Animal Control deputies said they found the damaged tracking collar, the dead hunting dog and two AR-15 rifles.
Beck reached out to 8News with the following statement:
I believe that my actions in this matter were legal, justified, and necessary for our protection.Adam Beck
My family and I have pets and livestock of our own. We routinely return free roaming hunting dogs to their owners when found on our property. Those free roaming dogs who we cannot identify are turned over to animal control. Caroline county should have record of us turning in hunting dogs on at least 2 separate occasions in the past 3 years.
We have had issues with poachers and free roaming dogs for years, and have always handled the matter legally and with the utmost respect for the animals. While we are generally opposed to Virginia’s current trespassing and free roaming exception for hunting dogs and their owners, we would never hold the actions of an animals owner against the animal itself. “
The investigation is ongoing and other charges are pending.
“I am saddened by the animal cruelty that took place yesterday, Sheriff Lippa said. “This is a reminder to all that it is illegal to remove a dog’s GPS collar and identification tags, and it is a felony to harm or kill a hunting dog.”
Beck has been released on a $2,500 unsecured bond.