Teacher accused of feeding dog to turtle is going to trial

Posted at 5:17 AM, Jan 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-02 07:17:40-05

PRESTON, Idaho — A Preston Junior High School biology teacher accused of feeding a live puppy to a snapping turtle is set to go to trial starting Thursday.

The Idaho State Journal reports the teacher, Robert Crosland, was charged in Franklin County with one count of misdemeanor animal cruelty in June. The charges were filed after allegations surfaced that he fed a puppy to the turtle in front of a small group of students at the school in March. Crosland has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The two-day trial will take place in Preston's Franklin County Courthouse. If convicted of animal cruelty, Crosland faces up to 6 months in jail and $5,000 in fines. Crosland has no criminal record.

The state Department of Agriculture later euthanized the snapping turtle, which Crosland owned but kept at the high school. It was an invasive species in Idaho, and he didn't have a permit for it.