An investigation has been opened after a small dog was tossed out the window of a fourth-floor apartment in central St. Petersburg, local prosecutors said in a statement Monday.
Witnesses claim that that the Yorkshire Terrier was discarded from the apartment window on Friday night, striking a parked van before falling flat onto the asphalt, the statement said. The canine was still breathing but had broken its spine and fallen unconscious when witnesses tended to it after it hit the ground, prosecutors said.
The dog had to be euthanized due the severity of its injuries.
Witnesses at the scene at the time of the incident said they first heard shouting coming from a fourth-floor apartment before seeing the dog tumble from the window, the statement said.
Relatives of the person who allegedly committed the cruel act told the Russian News Service on Thursday that he was an alcoholic and had not meant to hurt his beloved pet.
Under Russian law, individuals convicted of animal cruelty can face a fine or up to one year in prison.
State Duma deputy Oleg Lebedev proposed in March that the punishment for animal cruelty be increased twofold. The federal legislative body returned the proposed bill to its author later that month because it did not comply with Duma regulations.