Rudolph Poppe will serve less time for savagely killing dog than you might think

RudolphPoppeFEAT.jpg
Rudolph Poppe
In July, Rudolph Poppe brutally killed his 13-year-old Golden Retriever in his driveway with a sledgehammer as horrified onlookers, including a number of children, watched.

SEE ALSO: Katherine Kersten's bizarre plot to kill your dog: A moral history

Poppe, a 71-year-old Savage resident, was sentenced earlier this week. And while the Star Tribune characterized his punishment as "above and beyond the usual sentence for animal cruelty," others regard it as too light given the cruelty of his crime.

Poppe was sentenced to 90 days in jail and five years' probation, during which time he's banned from owning pets and drinking alcohol (his BAL the evening he killed his dog was 0.16).

During the sentencing hearing, Scott County District Court Judge Rex Stacey told Poppe, "I think about the kids in the neighborhood who saw this, whose parents pleaded with you not to do this."

"I was never intent on sending you to prison, but those kids... I want their parents to be able to tell them you went to jail for it," Judge Stacey continued, according to a Shakopee Valley News report.

Poppe's legal counsel argued he was just putting his elderly dog out of its misery in a manner similar to how his stepfather used to kill horses on his farm. But Judge Stacey said that doesn't mitigate what Poppe did on that July evening.

"The way we treat our pets defines us," Stacey said. "You don't live on a farm, Mr. Poppe. You're not your stepfather... I'm doing a very specific thing. I'm judging you for what you did that day."

If you're interested in reading a wide range of responses to Poppe's sentence, check out the comments on the Justice 4 Millie Facebook page. (Millie was the dog Poppe killed.)

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.

My Voice Nation Help
94 comments
Gregory William Deakins
Gregory William Deakins

Agreed. The dog was old and ready to die. Most of these comments are from people that happily contribute to horrific animal abuse for their food, makeup, clothing etc. Yet feel the need to pipe up on this poor man's decision to euthenize his own property. The only issue here is the method, but to read some of this shit you would think it was his own Mother he culled.

Gregory William Deakins
Gregory William Deakins

Not standing up for this POS but all of you that are talking about hurting animals had better be vegan and up to date on every other item you wear, use or advocate that uses animal products or you are just being ridiculous,

David C. Steffens
David C. Steffens

Poor dog, and guy, didn't have a gun. I've had to put animals out of their misery.

Courtney Hannon
Courtney Hannon

Fuck this sociopathic old saggy waste of existence. Someone should burn down his house...with him in it.

Jan Vukonich
Jan Vukonich

All Of Them Should Get Their Due Punishment- I HATE Hearing Or Seeing Stories Like This!!!

Jan Vukonich
Jan Vukonich

This is totally bullshit- this guy should be tortured the same way he tortured his dog, but much worse! "F"ing Asshole- to put it nicely!

Kayla Fuller
Kayla Fuller

It's the Bystander Effect and the diffusion of responsibility effect making this happen. The more people there are witnessing something, the less likely any one of them is going to do something about it. They all think someone ELSE will do something about it and thus, nothing gets done. This is how such things happen like people getting sexually assaulted on subways. There was a woman being beaten and raped outside her apartment and when people inside heard the noise a lot of them went to their windows and turned on their lights. This scared the attacker off, down the block. The woman then started crawling toward her apartment. No one actually left their homes to help her inside. The attacker saw this and came back and murdered her.

1imaginarygirl
1imaginarygirl

I'm infuriated that people are actually defending this guy. He's not a criminal? It's a harsh sentence for brutally beating "just a dog", but if it was a child, would 90 days be enough? He learned this behavior from his father? He's almost 72 years old - not 12! I would think in the past 50+ years, he would have picked up on some common sense and compassion and maybe the difference between right and wrong! And are you seriously comparing a sledgehammer on the head to a drug that quietly and peacefully puts a dog to sleep within seconds? If the dog was sick, she needed to be seen by a vet. That is the responsibility you take on when you bring a pet into your home. But maybe we should save the tax payers money. Just a hammer to the head of anyone over 55 and to the small children with cancer that will never see a double digit birthday and to the disabled. They're old and or going to die soon anyway, so let's just put them out of their misery now. If I wanted to bash someone's head in, and the possible outcome was 90 days jail time with food and shelter or an eye for an eye head bashing, which one do you think is going to cause me to think twice before acting? Humans are parasites. We destroy everything. Because we can. We get away with it. Because there are no real consequences.

Nicole Johnson
Nicole Johnson

So violently beating & murdering an animal in front of children is not criminal enough for jail Gary Walsh?!? Im sorry, jail is meant to punish violent offenders and just because his crime was directed at an animal doesn't make it any less violent. Who's to say he wouldn't turn that anger on anyone who pissed him off! Jail is not enough, he obviously needs some sort of counseling & anger management as well.

Gary Welsh
Gary Welsh

This is sick and sad and horrifying.....but is this something jail would solve? This just doesn't seem like a productive use of tax payer money. Sometimes we get horrified and want all losers to go to jail but I don't see that solving anything. We need the jails to be for criminals. I'm not defending the guy at all; just don't need guys like this clogging up the system. Probation is all this guy needs. He fails....he goes to jail....he doesn't then that's good also.

Annette Williams
Annette Williams

This guy deserves the same treatment. What a frickin jerk. He will get his one day.

muchmail
muchmail

I'm willing to bet this is not the first violent act this pig has ever committed. Check in this guys past, there's probably horrible things he's done to defenseless humans, particularly children.


The lawyers who defended him should be ashamed. Anyone know their names?

Tammey Molinaro
Tammey Molinaro

and to think I was reading about him earlier that he will b e able to possess pets in the future...are you KIDDING me? OMG!!! He shouldn't be able to....

Misty Ferrell
Misty Ferrell

Dear God, I can't even express how disgusted and angry this makes me. How is savage torture a form of putting an animal out of it's misery? Read the police report, he was mad that the poor old dog pooped on his carpet. What a demonic beast this man is! An eye for an eye in this situation sounds pretty amazing.

Jennifer Lynn
Jennifer Lynn

Hopefully someone will kick his ass in prison, since I'm sure most of them witnessed ass beatings or had them in their lifetime.. Wtf ? A sledge hammer .. That poor dog. . A vet could have done it humanely if it was sick. .. Obviously he was not on a farm was in front of kids so much wrong with this. Hate animal abuse ... Sick fuc**

Heather Forsyth
Heather Forsyth

Heck yeah, love that the judge said he's "judging" him.

Jessica Wendt
Jessica Wendt

Why do u post shit like this, it is sick and ruined my day knowing people exist out there. Horrible

Cindi Hollings
Cindi Hollings

Write to your legislators, something needs to change as this is happening all over the United States. Ask your congressman's opinion and if you don't like it, don't vote the A-holes in again. One person alone has a hard time changing things, but as a group...we can move mountains! Do it for the pets, be their voice!!!!!!!!

Ran Dazzle
Ran Dazzle

that old bastard will die soon..hope its painful

braidedmerkin
braidedmerkin

Picture looks like Rudy caught himself in the forehead on the back swing with the sledge hammer. Additional "justice"?

geminib1ch
geminib1ch

This SICKENS me. Come on system, when is something going to be done? Humans DO NOT have the right to beat animals or other humans. There is WAY too much abuse on animals (beatings, dog fights, burning, etc) and they ALWAYS are set free. 90 days IS NOTHING. Karma will get him one day. Lets be the voice for animals...do not let them be the doormat for POS people.

Terra Walker
Terra Walker

Yeah, no, this was in no way something a reasonable person should do. He's obviously a bit unstable and does need to be punished. I would GLADLY step in to enforce some justice here. Just sayin...

Ron Anderson
Ron Anderson

Should went to the. Vet!! He's a crusty old ASSHOLE

Ива Дробышевская
Ива Дробышевская

I believe there won't be much time until he lays his hand on a human, maybe even a child from his neighborhood. Terrible.

Justin Irvine
Justin Irvine

Hit him with a sledgehammer in the head a few times and see how he feels!

andreatte
andreatte

I happen to think there is a special place in hell for people who abuse the helpless.  Pets, children, elderly.  If we all behaved in the manner in which we were raised without using any common sense, the world would be an even scarier place.  Lots of people have really crappy childhoods and use common sense and logic, maturity as a way in which to conduct themselves.


He did this in broad daylight, in front of children, while intoxicated.  Its not like this was in the dead of night out in the country.


This man didn't execute any tact, furthermore he could have safely and gently euthanized the dog like all of us do, at the vets office.

Matthew Martin
Matthew Martin

Lily Ann, ever seen Old Yeller? Some argue that killing animals to prevent suffering is just.

Lisa Lindstrom
Lisa Lindstrom

Why can't he be beaten with a sledgehammer? Seems fair.

Lily Ann
Lily Ann

You should get the fuck out of my state. PERIOD.

Erin Predmore Holm
Erin Predmore Holm

When I looked at this photo, my first thought was that he looked so sad & then, that he'd probably experienced the same sort of thing when he was a kid. So, it wasn't surprising to open up the article & read that he had. I'm not a pet person, but I hate the thought of an animal suffering.....and children, too. Yes, he deserved more time in jail, but yes, I'll bet he deserved a better childhood, as well.

Matthew Martin
Matthew Martin

Not to defend what this man did. But let's try to remove emotion from the situation. We have a 71 year old man, who witnessed his father killing horses (we can assume when they were too old to work). He has a 13 year old dog (we can assume may have been failing in health). Rather than taking the dog to be euthanized, he handled the situation like his father did. Assuming the dog was sick, he had the right idea putting it out of its misery. The fact that his BAC was .16 doesn't help, also the fact that he chose the WORST location to do it. Not saying he should have done it that way. But I can see why he did it and why the judge gave him a lighter sentence.

green23
green23 topcommenter

Get real. He's not going to even serve 90 days. He'll get out before that. And then, he'll have to make a phone call to a probation officer once a week. He'll probably only see the probation officer once a year in person, and he will probably still continue to drink in spite of the court order. Oh, how horrible for him! It's probation, not parole, and it won't inconvenience him one bit. 


The only hopeful thing is that his neighbours will be watching him and will keep the probation officer's number on their phones. 


For someone who is "sickened" by Poppe's actions, you seem to be more concerned that he will suffer any kind of consequence at all for those actions. 


At least I got a chuckle from your anonymous post criticising people that post anonymously.


muchmail
muchmail

Unimaginable cruelty is put apon defenseless beings (especially animals) every day. It makes my stomach turn when I see what humans are capable of. Take some action, man. Stand up. Do something. This shit is the tip of the iceberg. 

_Joe_
_Joe_

@geminib1ch 

90 days is nothing, huh?  90 days of incarceration and 5 years of probation would have zero impact on your life - is that what you're saying?

You wouldn't lose your job or fall behind on bills?  Maybe get evicted or go into forclosure?


Seems pretty appropriate to me.

1imaginarygirl
1imaginarygirl

1) Old Yeller, which is fiction btw, took place in the 1860s. Technology has advanced a bit since then.

2) Sledgehammers to the head do not prevent suffering in any way. Ever.

3) If the dog was ill, it was Poppe's responsibility to bring her to the vet for medical care.

4) If she was truly suffering, it was the vet's job to end her suffering. Not Poppe's.

5) OLD YELLER TOOK PLACE IN THE 1860s!!!

t-roe79
t-roe79

I agree, personally I cannot believe that he was given jail time for this. No one is bringing up any criminal history so I am assuming that he doesn't have any. 71 years old with no criminal history means he is probably a decent guy overall. I know it is messed up, but in his mind what he was doing was the humane thing.

swanp20
swanp20

@green23


green23, I see exactly where you come from, but you may have missed my intent. I feel like the sentence was well deserved and I have no reason to stand up for him. I love dogs and have raised a few. I was just taken aback by how loud, cruel and judgemental many of the commentors where. But, its the internet.. and thats how it always works out. 


For the record, I had been drinking copious amounts of wine and decided to blurt out an incoherent rant on a citypages news story and had to create an anonymous profile (no facebook) to blather. In retrospect, this doesn't move me nearly as much on a sober Monday evening.  



green23
green23 topcommenter

I doubt that Poppe is still working, and I also doubt that he will serve the entire 90 days. The article says he's 71.


About a month ago, I sat next to a guy in a bar during a Vikings game. He was bragging to his buddy about all of the stuff he got away with while on probation, like drinking. He drove home drunk, and I saw him again there four days later drinking. Yeah, he was really inconvenienced. Probation turned his whole life upside down. 


Probation officers are completely overloaded. Mostly they just check to see if a person's name shows up in police reports, and they get a weekly phone call so they know if the person is still in town. Parole is a lot tougher; probation is a joke. 


Poppe might have to be a little stealthier when bringing his bottles inside from his trip to the liquor store. That's the long-term impact of his sentence.

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@_Joe_ @geminib1ch  90 days would suck for a drunk geezer like this...but there needs to be more punitive action for such a sick and twisted crime


i dont mean to be racist but a golden retriever - thats fucked 

Now Trending

Minnesota Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...