Battle Creek man convicted of beating a dog to death is denied appeal

Battle Creek man convicted of beating a dog to death is denied appeal.

The Michigan Court of Appeals spoke loudly for a Husky named Obie who was beaten to death on February 9, 2016 inside a house on Bennett Street in Battle Creek.

The dog beating case sparked outrage among animal lovers, like Cherie Wilson with the Animal Rescue Project in Kalamazoo.

"I cannot put in words what I thought about when I thought of him getting off free from what he did to this animal," Wilson said.

The court ruled David Eugene Hursley deserved every day of his 4-year sentence for punching, shooting, and beating his landlord’s dog with a baseball bat because he was begging for food.

"They dragged his body to the back porch to leave him dying, suffering, crying, and moaning," Wilson, who was present for the trial, said.

Judges affirmed the 56-year-old’s conviction two years after Calhoun County Prosecutor David Gilbert said Hursley was convicted in a Calhoun County court room.

"There is no price you can put on an animal,” Gilbert said. “So, when someone is being punished for hurting an animal like that, or killing an animal like that, you are talking about a member of the family."

In his appeal, Hursley argued he was entitled to kill the dog despite testimony from witnesses who testified. Wilson said the gruesome accounts of what happened were chilling.

"Police showed up and said it looked like a homicide scene, it was a homicide scene for an animal, “ Wilson said. “It was so bloody, it was unbelievable, you just can't even fathom it in your head, that a person could be that cruel."

The court ultimately rejected Hursley’s argument and upheld his prison sentence. Wilson said she is relieved he was not able to get away with it.

"My faith is restored in the justice system once again,” Wilson said. “The Michigan Court of Appeals stood their ground on this and realized this was a serious case.”

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