CECIL CO., Md. - A Maryland school district is investigating after one of its gym teachers has been charged with animal cruelty in the strangling and beating death of a 4-month-old puppy.
Todd Corron, a 36-year-old physical education teacher at Elkton High School, has been charged with felony aggravated cruelty to an animal for an incident that occurred on June 16. If convicted, he faces up to three years in prison and a possible $5,000 fine.
He's due back in court on Aug. 28.
Those convicted of animal cruelty they are also no longer allowed to adopt pets from the Cecil County Animal Services, and their information is sent to neighboring communities.
Abigail Lightning-Bingham, the Chief of Animal Welfare Enforcement, said that a 4-month-old puppy was strangled and beaten to death at a home on Harrisville Rd. in Colora.
“For any animal lover or for just any human being, in general, to think that an innocent creature that cannot speak up for itself suffered so egregiously and at the hands of someone he trusted,” Lightning-Bingham said. “There’s nothing worse than that, harming something that can’t speak for itself or defend itself.”
Robert Buckley, the associated superintendent at for Cecil County Cecil County Public Schools said the district is investigating the incident and will take appropriate action at the end of their investigation.
Buckley issued the following statement:
"Cecil County Public Schools has been made aware of the situation. We are currently investigating the incident and will take appropriate action at the conclusion of our investigation. Cecil County Public Schools understands the serious nature of the charges and will support the judicial process. We are unable to discuss personnel matters. We are following our protocol and conducting an investigation into this situation. He is currently not working with students as it is Summer break."
Some Elkton High School students say they aren't surprised by the charges.
“Little small issues, but he would get mad easily when there was no need to get that made for,” rising senior Jacob Buskell said.
One of Corron's neighbors called the news heartbreaking because they had seen the innocent puppy before and returned it to this home.
“It really makes me sad,” the neighbor said. “It makes me want to cry knowing what that animal went through and that they feel the same fear and pain that we do. It’s as upsetting as if I heard it happened to a person”