ACCOMACK Co., Va. - An Accomack County man arrested on animal cruelty charges in January was found guilty Monday.
Jose Guadeloupe Berlanga-Francisco, 21, was arrested after a dog was found dead at a home in Parksley. He was charged with Animal Cruelty: Deprivation, and Failure to Provide Shelter.
He was found guilty on both charges. Though he will not serve any time in jail, he will be forced to pay nearly $300 in fines, in addition to court fees.
Berlanga-Francisco's brother, Louis Berlanga, 23, was also issued a summons for one count of failure to provide proper shelter and one count of failure to provide adequate food. He was cleared of his charges.
The investigation began in January, after a Jose posted a picture of his dead dog on his Facebook page. The disturbing picture shows several piles of vomit around the dog. The picture quickly went viral, causing animal activists from as far away as Richmond to take interest in the case.
More than a dozen animal activists from across the state made the trip to Accomack County to attend Jose's proceeding. Before the proceeding they gathered in the parking lot and held up signs of abused dogs. While they were grateful the judge found Jose guilty, they say they are disappointed in the lack of punishment handed down from the judge. After the ruling they called his fines and fees "a slap on the wrist".