Lexington County deputies have charged a man they say killed his family's pet dog, WLTX-TV reported.
John Scott Mill, 37, has been charged with ill-treatment of animals, authorities told WLTX.
An arrest warrant states that on May 27 Mill “tortured, tormented and cruelly killed” the family's Labrador retriever.
According to the document, Mill taped the dog's mouth closed with black electrical tape and put the dog in a laundry closet on the rear porch outside the apartment.
In the location, the dog had no access to food, water, or appropriate living space, deputies say.
The dog was the pet of the man's three-year-old son.
Investigators haven't determined a motive for the incident, but they said the man had been in a verbal fight with his wife on May 26. According to officers, the wife left their home with their son after the fight, and Mill sent her text messages that he was going to kill the dog.
Officers say the wife didn't report the threats because she thought the man was intoxicated and wasn't serious.
The dog's body was found on May 28 by a moving company that was packing up the family's belongings to move to a new home. When the movers showed Mill the dog's body, they say he took the tape off the dog's body and threw the animal's remains in a dumpster.
One of the movers reported the incident to law enforcement.
Ill-treatment of animals that involves torture or torment is a felony that carries a maximum punishment of five years in prison.