Judge J. Wade Padgett was outraged Thursday that Devonte Bogan punched his girlfriend, breaking her nose. But it was what Bogan did next that earned him time in prison: He killed her puppy with a hammer.
Bogan, 21, pleaded guilty in Richmond County Superior Court to misdemeanor battery and criminal trespass and to the felony offense of aggravated cruelty to animals.
Assistant District Attorney Adam Land told the judge he believed some time in prison was appropriate, but he agreed in the plea negotiation to recommend no more than three years.
Defense attorney Pete Theodocion acknowledged that what Bogan did was terrible but said that in context, three years in prison seemed too much – more that what former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick received for his role in dogfighting and killing dogs (21 months) and more time than some local people who starved their pets to death have faced.
Theodocion also argued that Bogan wasn’t the kind of person judges usually see. Bogan graduated from high school, kept a steady job and, until the June 13 fight with his girlfriend, had never been in trouble. Theodocion said he just snapped that day.
Padgett said that four generations of family were in court to support Bogan did impress him. Even if what happened June 13 was a total break in character, Padgett said, he couldn’t get past Bogan’s killing the dog – a puppy that Bogan had given to his now ex-girlfriend.
Padgett sentenced Bogan to two years in prison, followed by four years on probation under the First Offender Act. Until his sentence is completed, Bogan cannot have any pets – not even a goldfish, Padgett said.