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Thursday, March 5, 2015

Kun Sun: San Francisco Man Charged With Starving Friend's Dog to Death

Posted By on Thu, Mar 5, 2015 at 2:37 PM

click to enlarge This is just a generic pic of a Bichon Frise - FLICKR/ALFRED M.
The San Francisco District Attorney's Office says a 26-year-old San Francisco man is responsible for starving his friend's young Bichon Frise to death and dumping the pup's body in Pacifica. 

On December 21, 2013, the San Mateo County Peninsula Humane Society was alerted to a dead dog that had been dumped near Palmetto Avenue in Pacifica. The pup was found in a shoe box with a small plush toy and a folded towel. Officers scanned the dog and detected a microchip which linked the dog “Penny” to her owner in San Francisco.

Seeing that the dog appeared to be severely underweight, investigators requested a necropsy to determine the cause of death while staff attempted to track down Penny's owner. They learned that the owner had moved to China and had given the pup to a friend six months prior to the shocking discovery.

Sadly, the Peninsula Humane Society's chief vet determined the dog had no underlying disease and had died of starvation. Per the District Attorney's Office: 

The results showed no typical signs of lost/stray dogs (the hair on the pedal surface of all four feet was matted and these matts covered the entire ventral surface of the feet and the nails were intact and long). PHS/SPCA’s veterinarian determined the dog was confined and not allowed access to food for up to two weeks before the dog died; the necropsy report also noted that the dog’s stomach was completely empty. A sample of the femur was sent to a lab for bone marrow fat analysis. Normal bone marrow fat content is 59.4% or higher; the sample from “Penny” contained just 1.2%.

“We cannot begin to imagine the suffering this dog experienced,” said PHS/SPCA President Ken White. “The only positive we can take from this is knowing the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office treats animal abuse cases as seriously as we do.”

And prosecutors are taking this seriously. The DA tracked down the new owner, Kun Sun, and charged him with felony animal cruelty.  Sun was arraigned on January 29 and pled not guilty. He was released on his own recognizance but the court has required that he report to Supervised Pretrial Release twice a week. In addition, the court has also ordered that he not own, possess or have any animals within his immediate control.

“Complete disregard for the health and wellbeing of an animal is criminal,” said District Attorney George Gascón. “If you cannot care for a pet you have an obligation to contact authorities and ensure the animal does not suffer.”

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.

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