A judge sentenced an Oregon man to 60 days in jail for sexually assaulting a small dog whose injuries were so severe that she had to be euthanized, prosecutors announced Monday.
In sentencing 52-year-old Fidel Lopez, Judge Angel Lopez told the defendant he would have imposed a tougher penalty if the law allowed it.
“If it could have been more, I would have gladly given you more,” the judge said in court, according to a news release from the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office. The sentence — 60 days in jail and 36 months of probation — was the maximum possible.
Fidel Lopez pleaded guilty to a count each of aggravated animal abuse in the first degree and sexually assaulting an animal.
In entering the plea, Lopez “admitted that he unlawfully and intentionally tortured ‘Estrella,’ a Lhasa Apso mix, and that for the purpose of arousing his sexual desires, he sexually assaulted Estrella,” the release stated.
Lopez was arrested on Feb. 13 following an investigation that began late last year when the dog’s owner took her to an animal hospital amid concerns the pup had been sexually abused, according to officials.
Veterinarians determined Estrella had been sexually assaulted. The dog had to be euthanized because of “extensive internal injuries,” prosecutors said.
Forensic evidence confirmed Lopez abused the canine, the release stated.
According to an affidavit obtained by the Oregonian, Lopez became frustrated after his fiancee — Estrella’s owner — didn’t come home or answer her phone, and he had sex with the dog.
When the woman returned, the dog was crying and hiding under a couch, the newspaper reported. She requested a rape kit because Lopez had expressed a prior interest in bestiality, according to the Oregonian.
As part of the sentence, Lopez will not be allowed to have a dog for 15 years, the DA’s office said.
He also cannot contact Estrella’s owner without permission from the probation department, and he must undergo treatment for people who abuse animals, among other penalties.
“This case was prosecuted to the fullest extent possible under Oregon law,” Deputy DA Nicole
Jergovic said in the release. “The torture and abuse that Estrella suffered is unimaginable. Under Oregon’s current sentencing guidelines, Fidel Lopez is receiving the maximum sentence based on the amount of time he has already served in custody and his lack of criminal history.”