Teenage dog walker is facing animal cruelty charges - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Teenage dog walker is facing animal cruelty charges

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A teenager was reportedly caught on camera beating Grizzly the dog. (WFSB) A teenager was reportedly caught on camera beating Grizzly the dog. (WFSB)
BRIDGEPORT, CT (WFSB) -

A teenager who was supposed to be walking a dog, was caught on camera beating it, police said.

The dog’s owner, who uses a motorized scooter to get around, said he can’t walk the dog himself so he paid the teenager to do it. He described the teen as a friend of the family.

But now the teenager is under arrest and facing animal cruelty charges.

"I used to give him a few dollars to walk the dog and next thing I know, I find out the state police had him on camera,” Victor Martinez of Bridgeport said.

Martinez said his dog Grizzly seems to be doing fine, after 18-year-old Xavier Surles allegedly beat the 2-year-old dog.

"He just started, pounding on the dog, slamming him, something about trying to wishbone his legs, choking him. This is what the state police told me,” Martinez said.

Police have charged Surles with cruelty to animals and interfering with police.

Martinez said last week Surles was walking Grizzly on a grassy patch off of Nichols Street, near I-95 south in Bridgeport, when a driver called police to say the dog was getting hit.

That’s when state police turned a nearby highway traffic camera and allegedly caught the teen in the act.

On Tuesday morning, Surles’ mom told Eyewitness News that the allegations are blown out of proportion.

Martinez said Surles would walk Grizzly often, and wonders if this happened before. He said the days of the teen walking his dog are over.

"He used to cut my grass, do all sorts of stuff. Not anymore, I don't know what he's capable of,” Martinez said.

The teen is due in court next month.

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