202

Teacher accused of feeding puppy to turtle found not guilty

PRESTON, Idaho (AP) — A southeast Idaho teacher accused of feeding a live puppy to a snapping turtle in front of students has been acquitted of misdemeanor animal cruelty.

Media outlets report a Franklin County jury found Robert Crosland not guilty Friday after deliberating for about 30 minutes.

The charge was filed in June after allegations surfaced that Crosland put the puppy into an aquarium with a turtle at Preston Junior High in March.

Crosland pleaded not guilty in July.

During trial Friday the jury heard Crosland say in a recorded interview with investigators that he thought he was doing the right thing because the puppy was sick and likely to die.

The state Department of Agriculture euthanized the turtle, which Crosland owned. It was an invasive species in Idaho, and he didn’t have a permit for it.

Copyright © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.