Man charged with torturing, killing girlfriend’s puppy changes plea in court


Watch: Previously aired video shows his court appearance in June

CLEVELAND (WJW) — The man charged with torturing and killing his girlfriend’s puppy has changed his plea in court on Monday.

Phillip Savelli, 34, is charged with three counts of cruelty against a companion animal. He originally pleaded not guilty in June but, on Monday, changed his plea to guilty.

The incident happened in Highland Heights on June 3. Amy Beichler, the director of the Public Animal Welfare Society of Ohio, said Savelli repeatedly dunked a 10-month-old Yorkie in water and put it in the freezer until the dog was dead.

Goddard’s Law, named for the late FOX 8 meteorologist Dick Goddard, was passed in 2016, making it a fifth-degree felony to cause physical harm to a companion animal.

Savelli’s sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 23 at 9 a.m. in the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.

He is also ordered to have no contact with the victim.

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