Roberto Hernandez animal cruelty: Miami-Dade, Florida 19 year old filmed allegedly burning cat to death in cage before discarding remains to dogs.
A 19 year old Florida man has been filmed allegedly setting a cat on fire before feeding its remains to his dogs.
Footage, filmed in southwest Miami-Dade shows 19-year-old Roberto Hernandez dousing the animal with flammable liquid before throwing a flaming match towards the feline inside a metal cage.
The feline is observed in obvious agony while the teenager ‘leisurely grabs a drink and watches the defenseless caged animal burn alive,’ Miami-Dade prosecutors explained.
Hernandez then grabs the burnt animal and throws it towards his pit bulls ‘to finish [the] killing or to dispose of its remains’, Assistant State Attorney Nicole Garcia wrote in a motion filed last week- the Miami Herald reported.
Hernandez’s defense team insist the animal in the clip – filmed on July 10 2016 – was actually a raccoon – and that he killed the animal because it was rabid.
Roberto Hernandez animal cruelty: A case of mistaken identity?
The video was filmed by a couple who rented a home on Hernandez family’s rural property, and they insist they saw the teenager, then 17, ‘dousing a live cat with some sort of combustible liquid’.
‘He was very entertained burning the cat,’ the tentat, Marlene Gonzalez, who captured the incident on his home-surveillance system, explained in a police report.
He added: ‘I’m very sure it was a cat.’
Yet, Babelin Rodriguez, Hernandez’s grandmother, told WTVJ: ‘The animals kept biting the chickens, biting their legs, so they put a cage to catch this animal.
‘When the animal was caught in the morning, he found that it was a racoon. All he would see in his head is that animal is going to get loose.
‘It’s going to bite the dogs. The racoon is going to bite the dogs and him, so that’s the first instinct he had.’
The tenants, who claimed Hernandez was always ‘being a brat’ and did not like the stray cats that would wander onto the property, eventually reported the incident to police who arrested the teenager in 2017.
Prosecutors have sought to have Hernandez sentenced to at least 364 days in jail, plus five years of probation. Defense lawyers, citing the teen’s troubled childhood and his being forced to drop out of high school to help on his family’s farm, want probation and court-ordered therapy.
Hernandez is charged with animal cruelty with intent to injure or kill and is scheduled to attend a hearing on March 14 where Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Nushin Sayfie will be tasked with deciding Hernandez’s fate.