Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announced 43-year-old Brian N. Cline of Grand Island pleaded guilty on Friday afternoon before Erie County Court Judge Susan Eagan to one count of aggravated cruelty to animals (a Class “E” felony). The defendant pleaded guilty to the only charge in the indictment against him.
The defendant admitted he intentionally hit and kicked a toy poodle on March 12, 2020. The incident occurred at a home on Baseline Road in the Town of Grand Island. The owner found the dog deceased in a crate the following morning. A necropsy determined the dog died from blunt force trauma.
Cline faces a maximum of two years in jail when he is sentenced on Friday, Jan. 14, 2022. He remains released on his own recognizance, as the charge is non-qualifying for bail.
Flynn commended the Erie County Sheriff’s Office for its work in the investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Megan Mahoney of the animal cruelty unit and Assistant District Attorney Rachel Kranitz McPhee of the felony trials bureau.