A Chicago Public School teacher who recently adopted a rescue dog has been charged with beating the animal to death.
Police say 25-year-old Derek Fierro called 911 to report the death of his Labrador-Chow mix, Doc, and admitted he had punched the dog to death, ABC Chicago reports. When police arrived, Fierro was crying, and led them to the dog's body, which he had placed in the trunk of his car.
Fiero allegedly told police that he became frustrated with the dog, who had defecated on himself, and lost his temper while struggling to bathe him, CBS Chicago reports. Police say Fiero confessed that he punched the dog repeatedly.
Fierro teaches 4th grade at Eugene Field Elementary School in Rogers Park, and lives in Lakeview, Fox Chicago reports. A Chicago Public Schools spokesman said the Office of the Inspector General is investigating the allegations.
Lisa Klotnia, founder of the Chicago Canine Rescue Foundation, which placed the dog with Fierro, told the Chicago Sun-Times they were stunned to hear about the incident because it could have been prevented.
“We’ll take the dog back if there’s something wrong," Klotnia said. "If he had called us last night we would have figured out a way to pick that dog up. We try to do the right thing, and it’s devastating to have this happen.”
Fierro is facing a felony charge of aggravated cruelty to animals, according to the Chicago Tribune.