Nearly one year after a video of a man beating a turtle to death on an Austin hike-and-bike trail went viral, the 56-year-old man in the video will serve four years probation on a charge of animal cruelty, KVUE's and the Austin American-Statesman's Tony Plohetski learned.
As the result of a plea agreement with Travis County felony prosecutors, Terry Wayne Washington may not own a pet for four years, must stay 500 yards away from Lady Bird Lake, perform 200 hours of community service and pay a $200 fine.
According to an arrest affidavit, Washington was fishing on Lady Bird Lake when he reeled in the turtle. He turned himself in a couple of days after the video went viral and told police he beat the turtle because it lunged at him and tried to bite him. But he told police that he never tried to cut the line or unhook the turtle.
Prosecutors told Plohetski that making sure they obtained a felony conviction for Washington's crime was important to their office.
They said they also wanted to make sure Washington has on-going supervision while he's on probation for the next four years. If he violates any of the above terms, he risks having his probation revoked and being sent to prison.