Teens facing felony charges after abusing injured deer

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BROOKVILLE, Pa. (WTAJ) — Two Brookville teens face felony charges for a viral video depicting the graphic abuse of an injured deer.

The 10-page criminal complaint gives some long-awaited answers for people worldwide who have been waiting for the results of the Game Commission’s investigation.

According to the criminal complaint, both Alex Smith, 18, and the 17-year-old admitted to everything caught on video.

Police say Smith and the minor went hunting in Beaver Township, Jefferson County during deer opener on November 30.

The 17-year-old shot a buck from a tree stand, but did not kill it. Court documents say the 17-year-old accidentally fired a second bullet in the tree stand, approached closer to the injured deer, fired again, and missed, to which documents say he ran out of ammunition and Smith had no weapon on him.

That’s when police say Smith and the minor began recording video of them kicking and beating the deer on Snapchat, in an attempt to “finish him off.”

Smith and the 17-year-old male are charged with two felony counts of aggravated animal cruelty, two felony counts of conspiracy to commit animal cruelty, and several other misdemeanor and summary charges.

In a statement, Jefferson County District Attorney, Juff Burkett, said:

People have assumed that officers have been dragging their feet when, actually, the opposite is true. They have put a lot of hard work in on this case in order to present the case for prosecution.

The Borough of Brookville is glad to see the investigation has reached a resolution.

“Unfortunately, this incident did put a black eye on our town, but it does not affect overall who the people are in this town or who we represent,” Brookville Borough Manager, Dana Schreckengost said.

Smith’s charges could mean around two years of jail time, fines, and his hunting license revoked. The 17-year-old could lose his license as well. All other penalties would be determined in the juvenile court system.

WTAJ attempted to contact attorneys for both teens, but neither were available.

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