Clawson man faces abuse charge for pup with broken ribs

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

A Clawson man has been charged with animal abuse after his 13-week-old puppy was found with broken ribs, police said.

The 13-week-old puppy was found with broken ribs

Officers were called to Rishi Kunal Joshi’s apartment the night of Sept. 25 after neighbors complained that his St. Bernard puppy was “crying more than usual,” said Clawson police Detective Lt. Scott Sarvello.

Once there, officers noted the pup wasn’t moving and “howled in pain” when they tried lifting him, Sarvello said.

Concerned about the dog’s safety, the officers wanted him to be evaluated at an emergency veterinary clinic in Madison Heights. But since Joshi told them he was intoxicated, a friend had to drive the 26-year-old there in his car, Sarvello said.

Veterinary staff found the dog had two broken ribs, which upset Joshi’s friend enough to leave him at the clinic, Sarvello said. Meanwhile, the dog was ordered turned over to Oakland County Animal Control.

Joshi was escorted back to his home. He told police “he was intoxicated at the time and doesn’t really know” how the puppy became injured, Sarvello said.

“It’s just a sad case,” he said Tuesday night. “You’ve got to care for these things like a newborn child.”

But Joshi didn’t stop there, authorities say.

Rishi Kunal Joshi

The day after the incident, Joshi’s friend told police she found her 2015 Dodge Challenger with two mirrors torn off. He had apparently spotted the car in the parking lot overnight “and decided to take out some of his anger on her vehicle,” Sarvello said. Damage was estimated at more than $700.

Investigators submitted findings to the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office for review.

An arrest warrant was issued. Officers took Joshi into custody early Tuesday when he was en route to work, Sarvello said.

Joshi later was arraigned at 52-4 District Court in Troy on charges of animal neglect/abuse, a 93-day misdemeanor, and malicious destruction of property over $200 but less than $1,000.

The Clawson man stood mute in front of Magistrate Clement J. Waldmann. Bond was set at $5,000 on each charge.

Joshi was held at the Oakland County Jail until an alcohol tether was attached, Sarvello said. He also was ordered not to have a pet or animal while the case is ongoing.

His dog, which also suffered liver damage, remains under county animal control care for now, supervisor Ron Shankin said.

“We have no intention of releasing the dog until directed by the court,” he said, adding the pup is “doing quite well, but in terms of full recovery, we don’t know how long it will take.”