MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Centerville resident Larry Hanson, 61, is charged with a felony count of animal cruelty in connection to the shooting death of a neighbor’s dog, according to the Anoka County Attorney’s office.

The criminal complaint says the owner of the 3-year-old Dachshund named Buddy called police on Dec. 4 after she brought him to the veterinarian with a head wound that she believed was from playing with another dog.

The wound was actually a pellet that had entered Buddy’s brain. He later died from his injuries.

The owner suspected her neighbor, Hanson, who she told police had struck one of her dogs in the past with a broomstick because he was upset by their barking. Police questioned Hanson, asking if he shot Buddy. Hanson denied doing so, but showed hesitation. He replied the same way when asked if he owned a pellet gun. Hanson did tell the officer that he disliked dogs.

Investigators later spoke with Hanson’s wife that evening, who confirmed her husband did own a pellet gun, and that he had threatened to shoot the dogs in the past. When asked if she thought her husband shot Buddy, Hanson’s wife said yes.

On Dec. 5, investigators spoke with Hanson again. He admitted to shooting Buddy, but said he only intended to “sting” him. After the shooting, Hanson said he threw the pellet gun into another neighbor’s yard. Investigators later found the weapon.

Hanson’s first court appearance is scheduled for Jan. 10, 2020. He could face up to two years in prison if convicted.

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