Carver County man charged after shooting therapy dog that walked onto his lawn

A 55-year-old man has been charged with killing a therapy dog that wandered onto his lawn in Carver County last week.

Patrick Darryl Will was arrested on one felony charge of animal torture on Thursday and booked into Carver County Jail. On Friday evening, he was released from custody on bail and awaits his next court date.

According to court records, the Carver County Sheriff’s Office received a report on June 15 from a woman that her dog, Gus, had been shot somewhere near her home in Young America Township. The woman took him to a pet hospital, where the veterinarian recovered a gold-colored .22 caliber bullet and found at least one other gunshot wound.

Court documents state that Gus was euthanized due to the extent of his injuries.

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Authorities later reviewed Ring footage from the woman’s home and saw that Gus had walked down the driveway with the woman’s son at around 11:48 a.m. and returned bleeding at 12:08 p.m. The woman noted that Gus was a certified therapy dog for her sons.

Detectives spoke with neighbors, including Will, who avoided eye contact during their first conversation and said he had been away from his home at the time of the incident.

On Thursday, officials spoke with Will’s mother who said she had seen Gus on her property multiple times and told Will, “if something happens or a dog comes out here then get rid of it.”

Later that day, authorities went to Will’s workplace, and before asking any questions, he said, “I did it… it was on my yard. I shot the damn thing.”

Will later stated he originally thought Gus was a coyote and went to get his rifle. After realizing it was a dog that he believed had been on the property before, he shot at Gus, trying to aim above his head.

Gus then ran into some brush and Will shot into the area again, according to court records.

Will’s next court date is scheduled for July 19.