Feb 20, 2015 4:09 PM by News Staff
A Paradise man who investigators say severely beat his one-year-old pit bull last March was convicted of animal cruelty in Butte County Thursday.
According to the Butte County District Attorney's Office, Malak Jamal Cleveland (pictured below) was arrested in March of 2014 when animal control and the Paradise Police Department responded to a neighbor's report that there was yelling, coupled with a dog yelping in pain coming from his home.
When officers arrived at Cleveland's home they found Murphy, a one-year-old pit bull, with a bloody nose, a swollen face and a limp leg. A veterinarian examination revealed that Murphy had a dislocated femur in his right rear leg with a bone fragment chipped off. Murphy had numerous scars and injuries in different stages of healing all over his body, and it was also discovered that Murphy's right front leg had suffered a break several months prior.
A Butte County jury returned the guilty verdict Thursday in less than an hour, and Cleveland will be sentenced on March 18.
Fortunately Murphy's heartbreaking story has a happy ending; while the case played out in the courts Murphy resided at the Paradise Animal Control Shelter and became its mascot. He was adopted this week by one of the animal control officers who found him badly beaten last year.