[UPDATED with Not Guilty Plea:] Jaime Arturo Garcia, Accused of Slitting His Dog's Throat, Brings to Mind 5 Other Pooch-Abuse Cases

UPDATE, AUG. 4, 8:37 A.M.: At Orange County Superior Court in Westminster Wednesday, Jaime Arturo Garcia pleaded not guilty to slitting his dog's throat and setting fires in the Stanton home he shares with his sister.

ORIGINAL POST, AUG. 3, 8:44 A.M.: Jaime Arturo Garcia is scheduled to be arraigned in Westminster this morning on charges of animal cruelty and intentionally setting fires inside an inhabited dwelling.

The afternoon of July 24, Garcia is accused of closing all the doors and windows of the Stanton house he shared with his sister (who was not home) and setting several small fires by lighting piles of clothing on fire. When the fires burned out without spreading, the 30-year-old allegedly fed various pills to his dog, Dexter, in an attempt to poison the dog.

Then Garcia is said to have done something really sick.

He allegedly picked up a large kitchen knife and slit the 7-year-old dachshund mix's throat. The bleeding pooch ran around the house and into Garcia's bedroom, where he died on the bed. Garcia is now looking at felony counts of animal cruelty and arson of an inhabited property, a misdemeanor count of unlawfully causing a fire to property and eight years and four months in state prison if he's convicted.

Garcia's case also brings to mind other recent instances of doggone animal cruelty in Orange County. Note that any flea collectors pictured on this page and the next are representations, not the actual victims (who are shown in the videos):

Upset with the barking of a neighbor's dog in Mission Viejo, 51-year-old Michael Stuart Patterson kicked open the home's front door in November 2010 while yelling, "I'm going to kill you, and I'm going to kill your dog." He walked through the unoccupied home to the back patio, where he confronted Honey, whacking the 5-year-old German shepherd with a garden rake that permanently blinded and punctured the face of the dog. Patterson recently pleaded guilty to one felony count of first degree residential burglary and one felony count of animal cruelty. His sentence reads four years in state prison, but that time is stayed pending successful completion of 180 days in jail and three years of formal probation. He also has an Oct. 13 hearing in Newport Beach to determine the amount of restitution he must pay.

In September of 2010, Phoenix the earless German shepherd received a last-minute reprieve. He was about to be euthanized at a Downey shelter when he was saved by Coastal German Shepherd Rescue and taken to Alicia Pet Care Center in Mission Viejo. Authorities believe Phoenix was used as a "bait" dog: passive animals that are used to train fighting dogs.

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