Man arrested, accused of throwing puppy off balcony

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TAYLORSVILLE, Utah – A dog owner is mourning the death of her puppy, Wednesday, after her ex-boyfriend allegedly threw it off a three-story balcony.

Belle the Yorkie fell to her death just eight weeks after moving into her home at the Fairstone at Riverview apartment complex. Unified Police had already responded to the residence Tuesday night. Officers had broken up a verbal domestic dispute and asked a resident’s ex-boyfriend to leave the premises. That man then returned early Wednesday morning.

“He just started doing drugs in front of me, and I was like, ‘You’re not going to do this.’ I was like, ‘This is the reason I kicked you out,'” explained Karen Serrato, the dog owner.

Serrato says her ex-boyfriend refused to leave, so she decided she would go, instead.

“He had the dog and he was like, ‘Here’s your dog,’ and he threw her from up here,” Serrato said, standing outside her front door.

The Yorkshire Terrier fell three stories, through the handrails, to the cement.

“I just remember hearing her hit the floor, and I just ran down the stairs and, you know, she was just twitching, and I don’t know. She died after probably five minutes of twitching,” Serrato recalled.

Police say 20 year-old Juan Anzastiga then put the dog’s body in his car.

“That point in time is when our officers were arriving. Our officers were able to stop him and took him into custody. He still had the dog’s body in his car, and that was recovered,” said Lt. Justin Hoyal, with The Unified Police Dept.

Anzastiga is now behind bars at the Salt Lake County Jail. He is facing several charges including ‘tampering with evidence,’ ‘domestic violence,’ and ‘animal cruelty.’

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