Florida Man Arrested After Being Caught on Video Delivering 'Closed-fisted Blows' to Dog Called 'Thanos'

A Florida man was arrested over the weekend after he was recorded on a home surveillance camera viciously assaulting a dog with his fists, police say.

Joshua Schlotmann, 28, was detained on Sunday afternoon by deputies from the Lee County Sheriff's Office after footage surfaced showing him pinning the animal to the ground in his neighbor's front yard and hitting it at least three times with "closed-fisted blows."

The incident occurred in Lehigh Acres at approximately 11:40 a.m., according to timestamps on video footage first obtained and published by media outlet WBBH.

The video was captured by a Ring camera and came to the attention of law enforcement after being uploaded to the Neighbors app, which provides users with real-time crime and safety alerts uploaded by residents of local communities and regional police departments.

Deputies responded to a home in Lehigh Acres just before 2 p.m. and Schlotmann was arrested on aggravated animal cruelty charges after being interviewed by detectives. The dog, which is named "Thanos," was taken into care by the Lee County Domestic Animal Services.

"Not here. Not now. Not ever," Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno said in a statement. "I will keep throwing these abusers into jail until they get the message that I won't stand for it!" In a Facebook post, the police department uploaded images of the suspect and the pet dog.

On Sunday, September 8, 2019, the Lee County Sheriff's Office became aware of a video depicting a male physically...

Posted by Lee County Sheriff's Office on Sunday, September 8, 2019

Inmate records available online confirm Schlotmann was taken into custody without bond. His trial was scheduled for September 10 at 8:30 a.m in the Lee County Circuit Court.

Speaking to WBBH, neighbors expressed shock at the man's alleged outburst. Nancy Lallier, one local Lehigh Acres resident, told the news website: "I [would be] willing to spend a night in prison for what I saw today. It was the worst thing. I could hear him hit the jaw of the dog."

Penalties for aggravated animal cruelty in Florida can include up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000, according to Goldman Wetzel, a Tampa Bay law firm. It explains: "It is a third-degree felony to intentionally cause an animal's cruel death or to intentionally cause the animal to experience excessive or repetitive infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering."

Last month in Florida, a woman's pet dog, called Tank, was eaten alive by an alligator during a walk around a pond in the city of Auburndale. In July, a Florida man was arrested on animal cruelty charges after being accused of punching and suffocating his girlfriend's pet pug, called Nala.

Joshua Schlotmann
Joshua Schlotmann, 28. Lee County Sheriff's Office