Franklin man facing charges in death of dog

A 40-year-old Franklin man is facing charges for his involvement in the death of a dog after he locked it in his bathroom for several weeks.

Franklin police investigated Joseph Vargus after a landlord called them to report a dead canine in a residence on Oct. 5.

Police found that Vargus owned a canine, had never registered it, had never vaccinated it and had, at some point, locked the animal into a small bathroom in his residence without food or water.

According to Franklin police, Vargus never treated the animal for any illnesses it incurred while trapped and never released it. It died after several weeks locked in the bathroom and by the time police had found the dog, it had begun decaying into the floor.

Vargus was charged with two misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty, lacking proper registration, abandonment of animals and lack of vaccinations.

A criminal complaint was filed with District Judge Matthew T. Kirtland and a preliminary hearing will be scheduled.