A former University of Central Florida student accused of beating a puppy to death will serve probation and community service as punishment for the crime.
Luke Stribling pleaded guilty to animal cruelty in an arrest involving the death of his 17-week-old puppy. Stribling admitted to punching the puppy when it urinated in his apartment.
The two felony count arrest took place in September 2016, when the Orange County Sheriff’s Office investigated the crime after the puppy was declared dead at an animal clinic.
Stribling’s mother, father, and girlfriend testified that Stribling loved the dog and was devastated when the animal died.
“I know that he is incredibly remorseful for what happened,” said Stribling’s girlfriend. “There are some nights he can’t sleep of he will have a dream about Julian. It’s not something that leaves his mind, ever.”
The state ordered that the 20-year-old not be allowed any pets. “Not even a goldfish,” the judge said in a hearing. Three years probation, 100 hours of community service, 8 hours of anger management treatment, and $1000 to a pet charity were ordered by the judge.
Stribling expressed remorse in the public hearing when addressing the courtroom.
“I take full responsibility for that and I accept what punishment is deemed necessary. I’d like to continue my work and education and continue to grow and mature and become a better citizen of my community,” Stribling said.
At the time of arrest, Stribling faced up to five years in prison.
In 2014, the FBI announced animal cruelty to be classified as a Class A felony, along with arson and homicide.