An Ocala man was arrested Sunday after trying to escape Ocala police officers investigating reports of animal abuse.
Steven Fleming, 49, was taken to Marion County Jail and charged with aggravated animal cruelty and resisting without violence after officers found his dog Molly severely beaten in his home, according to the police report.
When apprehended, Fleming had a large amount of blood on his jeans and more was found in his shower along with a baseball bat split down the center.
The officers at the scene had responded to neighbors’ reports of a possible domestic dispute and animal abuse. They said the noises of glass breaking, yelling and the crying of a dog were so loud as to be heard from their houses, according to the police.
Officers had to chase Fleming after he ran away from his house. At the residence, they found Molly with visible head injuries and blood in her nasal cavity and ears.
Assisted by animal services, she was taken to a veterinarian who found the female American boxer and Labrador mix had a fractured skull, a swollen face and three stab wounds to the head.
One had penetrated the bone and entered her sinus cavity. She is being treated for her injuries in the care of animal services, according to the police.