KRIS WERNOWSKY • KWERNOWSKY@PNJ.COM • AUGUST 2, 2010
A Gulf Breeze man is charged with killing and skinning the family dog because he believe it was possessed by the devil.
Matthew O. Foote, 25, is being held on no bond on a third-degree felony of cruelty to animals and is expected to make his first appearance in court this afternoon.
Sheriff’s deputies on Sunday responded to the Reservation Road home of Foote’s father, Gerald Foote, who told investigators that his son had killed his dog.
When investigators arrived, Matthew Foote was calm and cooperative, according to his arrest report.
Foote explained he spent the weekend in Louisiana where he met a lot of “evil people.” He told the investigator that he also punched a girl on a bus and believed that “something was put in the water,” the arrest report says.
Matthew Foote told investigators he believed the dog, a 7-year-old dachshund-Chihuahua mix named Sasha, was possessed by Satan.
He described in vivid detail how he stabbed the dog several times and eventually held the dog’s mouth until she finally died, the report says.
He took the dog into the back yard and skinned its body. He dug a shallow grave and then doused the dog’s body with gasoline and lit her on fire.
He buried the body and threw the skin and entrails into a wooded area.
“I observed during the entire conversation, Mr. Foote never showed any emotion at all and was very matter of fact during his dialogue,” a Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s deputy wrote in the report. “He continued to say he did not really know why he did it.”
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