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Suspect arrested in West Boca pit bull puppy's death

Posted at 5:40 AM, Jun 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-13 05:40:36-04

An 18-year-old man faces animal cruelty charges in Palm Beach County after his pit bull puppy was severely beaten and died earlier this year.

Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control was called to the 9800 block of Arbor Oaks Dr. in West Boca. on April 28 after a lawn maintenance crew said they witnessed a man beating a pit bull.

The crew members told investigators the dog was crying, yelping and appeared to be injured.

The suspect, Kevin Braganca, admitted that he spanks his dogs and advised that he usually hits the dog on its rear end because "that area is harder and tougher."

An animal care officer and Palm Beach County sheriff's deputy later discovered the dog had died.

A veterinarian discovered during a necropsy that the dog named "Tank" had two broken teeth and determined the cause of death to be blunt force trauma to the liver. 

Braganca was booked June 11 at the Palm Beach County Jail and is being held on $5,000 bond.