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Jail term dealt for aging dog's mistreatment

Gerald Rogers

Gerald Rogers

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Gerald Rogers couldn't bear to see his aged Labrador retriever euthanized, though he could no longer afford to care for the dog, his attorney said.

Rogers' sentimentality is costing him a month in jail.

The Lawrenceville resident pleaded guilty this week in Gwinnett State Court to a misdemeanor count of cruelty to animals.

Judge Carla Brown sentenced Rogers to a month in county jail, followed by six months in work release and another five months probation. His sentence began Monday.

Rogers, 49, was arrested in August when a Georgia Power employee came across the malnourished dog at his Short Street home and notified police. The animal was so sick and flea-infested it had to be put down, authorities said.

Roger's attorney, Clay Thompson, contends the dog, which was between 15 and 17 years old, was near death anyway. Money troubles kept Rogers from properly caring for the animal.

"He's a good man, just in a rough situation financially," Thompson said. "He was the only one who cared for (the dog). In his heart of hearts, he couldn't be the one to carry the dog to have it euthanized."

Thompson was unsure if his client is employed or what he's most recently done for work.

Rogers was also ordered to pay $750 restitution to Gwinnett County Animal Control and to have no ownership of animals, said Gwinnett County Solicitor Rosanna Szabo.