A Castaic man pleaded no contest to charges that he killed two household pets with a homemade spear, a District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman said Monday.
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“Defendant Jared Foster pleaded no contest today to two counts of animal cruelty,” said Spokeswoman Shiara Davila-Morales.
“The defendant is expected to be sentenced Nov. 21 in Dept. D (in San Fernando),” she added. “He remains in custody.”
The terms of the plea deal were not made public Monday, and Deputy District Attorney Ani Bailey, who prosecuted the case, was not immediately available. The court looks at a no contest plea as essentially a guilty plea.
Foster pleaded not guilty Tuesday, and originally was scheduled for a preliminary hearing Wednesday, when Judge Lloyd Nash would have reviewed the evidence and decided if there was enough to warrant a trial.
The plea was part of a negotiated deal.
If convicted, Foster would have faced a maximum of five years in jail for two felony animal cruelty charges, Bailey said.
Deputies responded to reports of Foster allegedly acting “bizarre” back in June, when they found a dead animal in the backyard and Foster acting irrationally and aggressively, according to Sheriff’s Station officials.
Foster’s brother is the one who called the Sheriff’s Station.
When deputies arrived, they discovered a dead dog in the backyard that had been set on fire. The deputies were able to talk the suspect into coming out of the house and giving up without incident.
During their subsequent investigation, Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies found a cat in the house that had been killed with some type of sharp object.
Shortly thereafter, deputies discovered that the suspect had made a spear out of broomstick and a large kitchen knife, by taping the two together.
Deputies believed he used the spear and possibly an arrow to kill the cat and apparently the dog, as well, and that he set the animals on fire.
The suspect lived at the home with his parents and his adult brother. However, the suspect’s parents were out of town during this incident.
After the deputies’ investigation, Foster then was arrested and booked at Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station on animal cruelty charges.
Foster did not show up to his initial hearing, and a $60,000 warrant was put out for his arrest.
Foster was taken into custody by AMTRAK Police, according to Sheriff’s Department arrest records, after officials discovered he had an outstanding warrant.
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Source: Santa Clarita News