The Greenville County Sheriff's Office said the charges against the Marietta man accused of dragging a dog behind a truck have been upgraded.
Deputy Omar Yahya said Roger Owens was charged with felony ill treatment of animals Tuesday.
"The felony charge comes with a much stiffer penalty if the suspect is convicted," Yahya said.
After the incident, Owens was issued a uniform ordinance summons for cruelty to animals by Greenville County Animal Control.
Yahya said after further investigation by the sheriff's office, animal control and consultation from the solicitor's office, the charges were upgraded.
On Dec. 3, Greenville County Solicitor Walt Wilkins said his office was working with law enforcement to determine if more charges were needed.
Investigators with Greenville County Animal Control said a witness saw a driver in an old-model Ford white farm truck drag the dog in the area of Wildwood Road and Greer Highway in Marietta in November. Deputies said it was reported that the dog was attached to the truck by a short leash and the truck was being driven erratically.
The 1-year-old pit bull later named Andra Grace suffered injuries to her legs and feet, had to have surgery and a blood transfusion.
Andra Grace is currently being cared for by a dog rescue group called SNARR, which stands for Special Needs Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation.
Owens is also charged with two counts of driving under suspension and two counts of being a habitual traffic offender, Yahya said.
According to the Greenville County Magistrate's Office, Owens received a $30,000 surety bond. His bond was $10,000 for the ill treatment of animals charge and $5,000 for each of the other four charges.
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