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Murphysboro man who allegedly confessed on video is indicted on animal torture charges

Jacob Spradling, 22, of Mursphyboro, has been indicted on one count each of animal torture and aggravated cruelty to animals, according to the Jackson County State's Attorney's Office. 

Spradling is accused of strangling his girlfriend’s dog in June.

In September, a video of the incident went viral, sparking outrage on Carbondale social media pages and leading to his arrest. 

Spradling can be seen confessing to the crime in video posted by the owner of the dog’s brother to YouTube. He claims to have strangled the dog to death with its leash.

Jackson County State’s Attorney Joseph Cervantez said there are multiple videos that were submitted as evidence to the grand jury.

Cervantez announced Friday that a Jackson County grand jury indicted Spradling with charges of animal torture, a Class 3 Felony, and aggravated cruelty to animals, a Class 4 Felony, for an incident that occurred on or about June 19, 2021, according to a release from Cervantez's office.

The first charge Spradling is indicted on is one count of animal torture. The bill of indictment obtained by The Southern reads that Spradling “knowingly and without legal justification intentionally tortured an animal, in that the Defendant kicked, punched, punted, choked, and otherwise caused extreme physical pain to 'Moose,' a canine companion animal, all of which were done to prolong pain, suffering, and agony of Moose.”

The second charge, according to the bill of indictment, is aggravated cruelty to animals. The document states Spradling “intentionally and without legal justification committed an act that caused 'Moose,' a companion animal, to suffer death, in that the Defendant placed a leash around Moose's neck like a noose and strangled Moose until the animal suffered death.”

Spradling was previously charged and arrested on September 8, 2021. He was released on a $50,000 bond, according to the release.

"The indictment is not evidence of guilt — a defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which this office has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt," the release stated.

Cervantez added that the investigation of this matter was presented to the Grand Jury "to keep the case moving forward quickly and efficiently toward a just end.” 

Spradling is scheduled to be arraigned on November 9. 


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Kallie Cox is a general assignments reporter for The Southern with interests in political science, crime and courts, immigration, and social justice. Kallie is a SIU student and joined the newsroom staff in 2021.

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