A disturbing photo of a man hanging a dog over a second-floor condo balcony has created quite a stir on the Internet this week, and for good reason. The photo shows a puppy hanging mid-air by his leash as he's lowered from the balcony down to the street. You don't have to be a dog lover to be completely disgusted by the whole thing.
But it might make you feel better to know this horrifying photo has served its purpose. The man abusing the puppy? He's been arrested ... and it's thanks to that horrifying photo.
According to police in Greenville, South Carolina, Tyler Smith is the man on the balcony, and the dog belongs to his father. The 23-year-old was supposed to be taking care of the dog while his father was out of town, but cops say it seems Smith didn't want to take the dog outside to go to the bathroom because it was raining.
The result is the twisted photo seen above.
As a dog lover, I'll be honest: looking at the photo turned my stomach. But knowing the story behind it, I'm glad it was taken. After all, without it, Smith wouldn't have been arrested! A woman named Heather Vincelette shared the picture on the Facebook wall of the Spartanburg Animal Services, asking if it was legal, and that's what sent Greenville Police to Smith's doorstep. Smith now faces a misdemeanor for violating the city's Animal Care Ordinance (not to mention a VERY angry father/dog owner).
It's certainly something to think about when you're out and about. It can be scary to get involved when you see a crime going on because you don't want to be hurt somehow. I once saw an automobile accident go down, then I watched as one of the drivers hopped out of his car and scurried over to a nearby trash can to throw something out ... something he didn't want cops to see.
I ended up reporting it to the cop as a witness, who was able to get the guy to 'fess up, but I was NERVOUS getting involved. Right thing to do or not, I didn't know what this guy would do -- would there be retribution for my family? I was, after all, standing there with my toddler daughter.
So I speak from experience when I say that I understand why people are hesitant to get involved even if they see a crime go down. But it seems we ALL have cameraphones these days, and it only takes a second to snap a photo. Send it to the authorities, and you're good to go -- you may even be able to stay anonymous (at least if you keep it off Facebook).
So simple, but it could make a major life change for someone ... a dog included. I'm betting Tyler Smith won't be dog-sitting again after this particular photo.
Have you ever watched a crime go down? What did you do?
Image via Facebook