Ezekiel Reynard Pitts, who worked at a PetSmart store in Houston, was apparently having a bad day in February.
To make it worse, he told police, a dog in the store nipped at him. Pitts said that when he threw cleaning disinfectant at the dog, named Tulip, she jumped up, causing him to spill the caustic chemicals on another dog, Nala.
But the surveillance video from a security camera tells a different story, KPRC reports. Pitts can be seen measuring out the disinfectant, which he knew to be caustic because he’d been burned with it himself. He then threw it on both the dogs.
Tulip died from her injuries.
“We are heartbroken by the loss of Tulip and injuries sustained by Nala. Nothing is more important than the health and safety of pets, and we take full responsibility for the pets in our care,” PetSmart said in a statement, according to KPRC.
After conducting an internal investigation, PetSmart fired Pitts and contacted local police, who are investigating the incident.
Pitts was charged with felony cruelty to animals. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.
“Any incident of animal cruelty goes against everything we believe as a company and as individual pet parents,” PetSmart stated. “No words can express our deep sorrow for the family.”
UPDATE: According to a June 2019 message from Angelina Pitts, “I would like you all to know Ezekiel’s trial is over and he has been found ‘NOT GUILTY.'”
Photo credit: Anthony92931