West Virginia man gets jail time for hanging dog with chain

CHARLESTON, WV (WCHS/WVAH)- A man who hung a dog in a tree in Charleston and injured another pet was sentenced Wednesday in Kanawha County Circuit Court.


John Davante “Tay” Copening Jr. was sentenced by Judge Carrie Webster to one to five years plus six months. He also will be banned from pet ownership for two years.

In September, Copening pleaded guilty to cruelty to animals and wanton endangerment.

Copening turned himself in in April after a dog was found hanging in a tree on Charleston’s West Side on Madison Street.

Police said a Charleston Police Department humane officer was called to the 1100 block of Madison Street for a report of witnesses hearing a dog squealing like it was being beaten near the railroad tracks.

Witnesses said when they went to see what was making the noise, they found a female pit bull hanging from a tree.

During the investigation, police found a surveillance video that showed a person of interest walking the dog in the area.


The same video shows the person walking back through the area about 10 minutes later without the dog.

Copening’s girlfriend, Sydney Delaney, turned herself in to police after she was wanted on a charge of accessory after the fact.

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