MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A southern Minnesota man is accused of fatally shooting a dog last week in front of his girlfriend and two young children.

Richard Jordan, of Chatfield, is charged with one count of mistreatment of animals and one count of dangerous discharge of a firearm, court documents filed in Olmsted County show.

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According to a criminal complaint, Jordan shot the pitbull-Labrador mix with a shotgun last Friday amidst an argument with his girlfriend over finances in a home in Orion Township.

The woman told investigators that the two were in a physical struggle over his debit card when the dog came over and started nipping at them.

After the dog nipped Jordan on the ankle, the 31-year-old fetched a shotgun and found the dog under the kitchen table, cowering.

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The woman and the children were nearby when Jordan knelt down and pointed the shotgun at the animal. The blast left a hole in the dog’s neck, just below the head. Blood splattered up to 10 feet across the room, the complaint states.

Jordan immediately said what had happened was an accident, his girlfriend told police. He wrapped the dog in blankets before taking the shotgun apart, putting it in a car and leaving the home.

After police arrested him, Jordan said that he shot the dog on purpose, for his safety and for that of the children.

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If convicted of the two felonies, Jordan faces a maximum penalty of two years in prison on each count, and/or a $5,000 fine.