St. LOUIS (KSDK) - A St. Louis Circuit Court judge convicted a 41-year-old East St. Louis woman accused of animal abuse for her involvement in injuring a pit bull puppy in November 2012.
The bench trial for Benetta Johnson last only three days before the judge handed down a guilty verdict for misdemeanor animal abuse.
Prosecutors said Benetta Johnson attemtped to return the then six-month-old puppy to her ex-husband, who had given the dog to Johnson's five-year-old daughter. Johnson tied the dog to the bumper of her ex-husband's pick-up truck on November 20, 2012.
The ex-husband, Victor Washington, drove off without seeing the puppy tied to the bumper. The dog was dragged along Interstate 55 until a passerby noticed the animal and got the man to pull over.
The judge sentenced Benetta Johnson to two years probation, which includes stipulations of 150 hours of community service, attending animal care classes, payment of court fees and a required $250 donation to the Humane Societ of Missouri. Johnson also cannot own a pet.
If she violates any of these terms of probation, Benetta Johnson must serve one year in jail.