A Westbury man is facing animal cruelty charges for beating his dog to death in an attempt to discipline him, authorities said Wednesday.
Bing Jie Yang, 23, hit the 2-year-old male Pomeranian, Dan Dan, on April 7 and efforts to revive the pet later at a veterinary hospital were unsuccessful, authorities said.
The dog was found to have internal bleeding, a torn liver and broken ribs, according to the Nassau County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and county prosecutors.
"He was being disciplined because he went to the bathroom in the house," said Gary Rogers, Nassau SPCA spokesman.
The hospital staff contacted the SPCA, which took the case to the district attorney's office.
Yang, a Chinese national, was indicted on one felony count of animal cruelty and one misdemeanor count. He was arraigned Wednesday in Nassau County Court in Mineola.
His attorney, Dana Grossblatt of Jericho, said Yang denies the charges.
"He came home and found the dog lying there," Grossblatt said. "He was the one who brought the dog to medical attention."
Yang is studying at Adelphi University to earn a master's in English as a second language so he can return home to teach, Grossblatt said.
He was ordered to surrender his passport and faces up to two years in jail on the top charge, prosecutors said. He was released on his own recognizance and is scheduled to return to court Wednesday.
"This defendant allegedly beat his small Pomeranian so mercilessly that he broke the small dog's ribs, fractured his liver, and ultimately killed him," Acting District Attorney Madeline Singas said in a statement. "Crimes against the defenseless, whether animal or human, are among the most heinous."