The Florida state attorney’s office is reviewing a case of alleged animal abuse committed by a vet tech. The incident was caught on video, a copy of which has been obtained by WFTV.
The disturbing video reportedly shows vet tech Stefanie Stasse swinging a dog by its neck and slamming it into the wall while she was working at the Emergency Pet Hospital in Orlando.
“The Orange County Sheriff’s Office said it handed over the case to the state weeks ago but the state denied getting it from investigators until just recently after Eyewitness News questioned its status,” WFTV reports.
Watch the video below (Warning! Footage will be disturbing to some viewers):
Dr. Mohammad Hassan, the owner of the pet hospital, has claimed in previous interviews that Stasse was rough with the dog because it had become aggressive.
“There was no damage whatsoever to the dog there,” Hassan said.
Hassan also said the video was “obviously stolen” and deceptively edited by someone who “obviously has bad blood” with Stasse. “Human safety comes first,” he added.
As the Daily Mail notes, Hassan later walked back his defense of Stasse. In a recent statement posted to the hospital’s Facebook page, Hassan apologized to “all of the pet owners and animal lovers who were rightly shocked by the cruelty on the video.”
“I was similarly shocked and sickened. We will go forward in the upcoming weeks and months working hard to clear the name of this facility, which believes in the ethical treatment and care of animals, and works tirelessly against their mistreatment,” the statement adds.
Editor’s note: The headline of this story has been updated to make clear that the state attorney’s office is investigating the vet tech’s actions, not the veterinarian that heads the pet hospital.