Caitlyn's Abuser Finally Sentenced!

One case, hailed as one of the worst incidences of animal abuse in recorded history, finally reached its conclusion today, and many people are sighing a breath of relief.


Image Source: Charleston Animal Society


Many know the story of Caitlyn, a chocolate colored Staffordshire Terrier mix, who was found in North Charleston, SC on May 27, 2015 with duct tape wrapped incredibly tight around her muzzle. The veterinary team that worked on her estimates that she was in this situation, unable to eat or drink, for at least 48 hours, and she even lost circulation to her tongue and part of it had to be removed! When the tape was finally removed, Caitlyn actually screamed—a sound that still haunts her caregivers. It was touch and go for a while, as the whole world held their breath, hoping she would defy the odds, and we all rejoiced when she pulled through.


Image Source: Charleston Animal Society


Soon after her recovery, the demand for her torturer to be caught was heard from every corner of the earth. Today, animal advocates, and Caitlyn advocates, are celebrating as 42-year-old William Leonard Dodson was sentenced to the maximum penalty of 5 years. He has been in jail since June 2015, and was sentenced to another 15 years in federal prison for unrelated drug and weapon possession charges.


The presiding judge told Dodson that he wished he had the power to give Dodson a heavier sentence than the 5 years for putting Caitlyn through what he described as “hell on earth.” Reportedly, Dodson was given the opportunity to speak on his own behalf and apologize for what he did to Caitlyn, but he declined.


As the 2 year anniversary of her rescue approaches, Caitlyn is no longer worrying about Dodson. Instead, she is enjoying life. She is a beloved family pet of a Charleston Animal Society staff member, where she has been for the past 2 years. Caitlyn is also the face of a large movement to end animal abuse. In 2015 she was named People Magazine‘s Survival Story of the Year. The hashtag “#IamCaitlyn” now stands for millions of other abused animals who need justice.


Image Source: Charleston Animal Society


Just to add on to her incredibleness, Caitlyn’s Animal Cruelty Fund has been established, and since 2015 it has funded medical care for hundreds of abused animals, and it has helped community outreach and awareness programs all over. Dodson will spend his years in prison while Caitlyn continues to save lives.


What do you think of the sentence? Was justice served?

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