(Shoshoni, WY) – A March 18 jury trial has been set for Fremont County man Cedric Shakespeare for reported events that occurred on September 16 and October 14.
Shakespeare faces one count of felony cruelty to animals and one count of enhanced penalty felony domestic battery (3rd or subsequent due to a charge from February 26, 2021).
The domestic battery charge stems from a reported incident occurring on October 14, when the Riverton Police Department (RPD) responded to a physical assault call.
The victim went on to tell RPD that they were driving in their car with Shakespeare and two other individuals, when Shakespeare began to punch them with a closed fist.
The victim said the first punch was hard enough to make their nose bleed, and that they were unsure of how many times he went on to hit them.
At one point, the victim exited the vehicle and attempted to lock Shakespeare out, but he was able to get back in and continued to hit them.
Law enforcement noted the visible injuries and the dried blood on the victim’s body, as well as blood splatters and smears on the outside of the vehicle.
The court documents go on to state that one of the other individuals in the vehicle corroborated everything the victim had reported.
The felony cruelty to animals charge stems from a reported incident occurring on September 16, when the Shoshoni Police Department (SPD) responded to reports that a puppy belonging to the reporting party’s tenant had been attacked.
The tenant, who was six months pregnant at this time, had asked the reporting party to check on the puppy after they had left the scene to avoid further physical confrontation.
The reporting party then stated they did as the tenant asked, and when they entered the property, they discovered the puppy had died and immediately contacted law enforcement.
Upon arriving at the scene, SPD Chief Chris Konija discovered fresh blood on the exterior of the front door and into the entryway that continued all along the walls, which ultimately led into a bedroom where a large pool of fresh blood was observed.
From that pool, bloody paw prints led to underneath the bed, where Chief Konija found the dog in another pool of blood and determined the animal “ultimately suffered until it was deceased.”
Chief Konija then contacted the tenant, first via phone and then later in person, who informed that Shakespeare and another male “were already drunk” that morning when she woke up.
She went on to state that they continued to drink throughout the day, while Shakespeare’s daughter “played rough” with her blue heeler puppy.
After taking Shakespeare’s daughter to the park later that morning, the tenant reported that the puppy nipped at Shakespeare’s daughter’s cheek while she continued to play rough with the dog when they returned home, which caused a minor scratch on her cheek.
At this point, Shakespeare began beating the puppy, and he and the other male soon brought the dog into the bedroom, where more beating occurred.
The other man would later go on to tell Chief Konija that Shakespeare produced a knife at this point and began stabbing the puppy, something that he was afraid to stop for fear that he or the pregnant tenant would be stabbed as well.
Court documents go on to say the tenant attempted to go into the bedroom to stop Shakespeare, but the other man blocked her from doing so.
Eventually, she was able to make her way past him to grab her dog, but Shakespeare, who was well aware that she was pregnant at the time, threw her against the wall, and she fell to the ground.
The tenant then stated that Shakespeare continued to beat her dog as she ran from the residence to meet with a family member and get away from the altercation.
Shakespeare’s jury trial will take place on March 18.
A felony cruelty to animals charge carries a maximum punishment of 5 years imprisonment and a $5,000 fine.
An enhanced penalty felony domestic battery charge carries a maximum punishment of 10 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.
County 10 will provide more information on this case as it progresses, which can be found here.