He allegedly provoked dog until it bit him, then killed the animal

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 5 for a Rochester man charged with killing a dog owned by a woman he lived with in retaliation for the dog biting him.

Jay Hoppe

Jay Hoppe, 51, made his initial appearance in Racine County Circuit Court on Tuesday where a commissioner found probable cause a crime was committed and set cash bond at $5,000.

Hoppe is charged with felony mistreatment of animals with use of a dangerous weapon and disorderly conduct. Both charges include domestic abuse assessments that could increase the penalty if he is convicted.

Investigators with the Racine County Sheriff’s Office contend Hoppe admitted choking and then shooting to death an English mastiff named Mack because the dog bit him, according to the criminal complaint.

The incident occurred at the residence in the 28000 block of Washington Avenue in Rochester he shares with the woman who owns the dog. According to the complaint, the woman was attempting to rehabilitate the dog, which had been abused in the past.

She told deputies Hoppe began handling the dog aggressively. She believed he was intentionally trying to provoke the dog and told him to leave the animal alone, the complaint states.

At one point, she told deputies, the dog growled and attempted to get away from Hoppe, but Hoppe grabbed the dog and pulled it back.

According to the complaint, the woman saw Hoppe with a bloody lip and saw the dog running away. Hoppe then caught the dog and began to choke it. The woman separated the Hoppe and the dog, but Hoppe was irate and yelled that the dog “has to go!”

The complaint contends the woman then began an audio recording of the incident, which captured sounds of Hoppe yelling and punching holes in the walls of the residence.

Hoppe then allegedly told the woman he was going to “put the dog down” and she began pleading with him not to shoot the dog. Hoppe also said that if the woman attempted to take Mack away he would kill one of her other two dogs, the complaint contends.

The woman then attempted to gather up all her dogs and leave the residence. However, when she put Mack in her truck Hoppe allegedly pulled the dog out. Deputies could hear the woman on the audio recording pleading with Hoppe to stop, according to the complaint, but he is heard to say that he is going to “kill that dog” and he is “going to put a bullet in its head.”

In the meantime, Hoppe allegedly called a friend to come and get his gun for him, the complaint contends.

The victim left with her other dogs and later received text messages from Hoppe telling her the dog, Mack, was “gone.”

Deputies found the dead dog at the end of the driveway of the residence.

For more Racine County Court news see this week’s editions of the Waterford Post, Burlington Standard Press or Westine Report.