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Man Who Killed, Burned Puppies Given Probation

Couple was allowed to continue owning dogs

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    NEWSLETTERS

    In a jailhouse interview, Chris Apala admits to killing three puppies with a stick before setting their bodies on fire in a barrel.

    A Tarrant County, Texas, man who admitted to killing three puppies with a stick before setting their bodies on fire in a barrel has been given 30 days in jail and probation.

    Chris Apala, 33, told NBC 5 in June the puppies were suffering, so he did the "humane thing" and then "cremated them."

    Apala and his girlfriend, 38-year-old Melissa Woodard, and their eight dogs, were living at her sister's home on the 7300 block of Cottonwood Creek Road in northwest Tarrant County. Woodard's sister called 911 after finding three of those dogs burned in a barrel.

    Couple Accused of Beating, Burning Dogs

    [DFW] Couple Accused of Beating, Burning Dogs
    Chris Apala (left) admits killing three puppies and setting them on fire, he claims he was being humane. While his girlfriend Melissa Woodard (right) says she had nothing to do with the dogs' deaths. Both face animal cruelty charges.

    Both Woodard and Apala were arrested and jailed on animal cruelty charges.

    The Tarrant County district attorney's office said that Woodard and Apala each reached plea bargain agreements on Tuesday. In exchange for guilty pleas, Woodard received three years of probation and Apala received five years.

    As a condition of Apala's probation, he was ordered to serve 30 days in jail.

    Both defendants were also ordered to undergo random drug testing, a drug evaluation and complete community service. If either violates the conditions of their probation, they face up to two years in state jail.

    The Tarrant County district attorney's office also said that the couple is not prevented from owning dogs as a condition of their probation.