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Cornville suspect arrested in dog-throwing incident

PHOENIX — A man was arrested Monday for allegedly throwing a puppy from a moving vehicle last week, the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said.

Cornville, Ariz., resident Joseph Lee Kennedy, 27, was arrested for two felony counts of cruelty to animals, as well as possession of dangerous drugs and paraphernalia, the YCSO said.

Witnesses originally reported someone throwing a small dog from a vehicle traveling along Cornville Road just before 9 a.m. on June 11. The vehicle was reportedly traveling about 50 mph, the YCSO said.

Authorities said the puppy was recovered from the side of the road and treated at a local emergency veterinarian clinic. The dog suffered significant neurological issues from the impact, they said.

County officials began searching for Kennedy on Monday afternoon following media reports, and a deputy spotted the man in the back of a truck stopped in a Cottonwood convenience store parking lot.

The YCSO added that a search of Kennedy’s property revealed three personal-use packages of methamphetamine as well as related paraphernalia.

Officials said Kennedy had an 8-month-old son in the moving vehicle last week. A friend was driving the vehicle at the time of the incident. After his arrest Monday, deputies asked Kennedy where his son was, and he refused to provide the location. Authorities eventually found the child in good health in Cottonwood under the care of a babysitter, and Children’s Protective Services took custody of the boy.

Kennedy was booked at the Camp Verde Detention center and remains in custody on a $17,500 bond, the YCSO said.