Case Snapshot
Case ID: 20050
Classification: Kicking/Stomping, Beating
Animal: dog (non pit-bull)
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Friday, Mar 7, 2014

County: Onondaga

Charges: Felony CTA
Disposition: Alleged

Alleged: James J. Carncross

Case Updates: 1 update(s) available

James "Josh" Carncross took his girlfriend's dog outside Friday night, but he didn't come back inside right away.

After about a half-hour, Carncross carried the 20-pound Dachshund inside to a bathroom, his girlfriend, Alexa Harris, told state police. The couple, who started dating shortly after he was paroled earlier this year, had plans to watch a movie that night at her Cherry Street home in Pompey.

Typically, Harris' dog would join the couple, she told police. But Buffy wasn't coming.

"Where's the dog?" Harris asked.

"Buffy," she called.

But Buffy didn't come.

Carncross went to the bathroom and called his mother, Terry Carncross, Harris told state police. Harris told troopers Carncross was trying to prevent her from seeing Buffy. She also said she overheard her boyfriend talking to his mother on the phone about the dog.

Then, Harris saw her 3-year-old Dachshund. Buffy was bloody and dead, state police said.

Carncross told Harris he thought the dog was sick and may have had a heart attack, according to her statement to police. Carncross' mother told him during their phone conversation to bring the dog to a veterinarian, Harris told police.

Harris, distraught at what she had seen, told troopers she was too upset and afraid and didn't want to go with Carncross. After he left, Harris saw blood in the snow in front of her house, she told police. A friend then called the vet to make sure Carncross had brought Buffy there.

Carncross had taken the dead dog to Veterinary Medical Center of CNY on Bridge Street in DeWitt, state police said. He then told Harris' friend that Harris needed to talk to the veterinarian since Buffy was her dog.

With Harris' permission, the veterinarian took X-rays, which showed Buffy had a skull fracture, said state police Sgt. Susan Lockyer, of the LaFayette barracks. State police have the dog's body. A necropsy will be performed to confirm the cause of death, Lockyer said.

Harris told troopers she talked to Carncross on the phone after the vet visit. He had changed his story: This time, Carncross told Harris he had kicked the dog down the stairs off the front porch, Harris said in her statement to police. State police said there are two steps from the front porch to the ground.

No explanation was given in the court papers to why Carncross allegedly kicked the dog down the stairs, state police said. His father, Jamie Carncross, of LaFayette, said James "Josh" Carncross had grown up with dogs and other animals, and he didn't think his son would intentionally hurt any animal.

Carncross, convicted of causing the death of Trooper Craig Todeschini during a high-speed chase in 2006, did not give a statement to police after Buffy's death Friday.

State police on Monday arrested Carncross, 28, and charged him with beating the dog to death. Carncross, of Apulia Road in the town of LaFayette, is now facing a felony count of aggravated cruelty to animals. LaFayette Town Justice Adrian Shute arraigned Carncross on the charge and sent him to the Onondaga County jail with no bail, pending a parole review.

Harris could not be reached for comment Monday. State police say the 21-year-old was aware Carncross was recently released from prison.

An Onondaga County Court jury convicted Carncross in December 2006 of aggravated criminally negligent homicide and reckless driving. Carncross, then 20, was accused of speeding on a motorcycle being pursued by Trooper Todeschini when Todeschini lost control of his state police SUV and crashed into a tree at the intersection of Route 91 and Cherry Road in Pompey Hill on April 23, 2006.

Carncross was sentenced to serve seven years in state prison, consecutive to a penalty of 1 1/3 to four years for violating probation in an earlier grand larceny case.

He became eligible for parole in August 2013, and was released from prison Jan. 2.


Case Updates

Growing up, James "Josh" Carncross helped his family care for dogs, litters of puppies and other animals.

"He's always been good around the animals," said his father, Jamie Carncross.

The elder Carncross said he is still trying to make sense of his son's most recent arrest.

James J. Carncross, convicted of causing the death of Trooper Craig Todeschini during a high-speed chase in 2006, was released from prison Jan. 2.

On Monday, state police arrested the 28-year-old and charged him with beating a dog to death Friday at a home in Pompey, troopers said. Carncross, of Apulia Road in the town of LaFayette, is now facing a felony count of aggravated cruelty to animals. LaFayette Town Justice Adrian Shute arraigned Carncross on the charge and sent him to the Onondaga County jail with no bail, pending a parole review.

With his son behind bars, Jamie Carncross said Monday evening he doesn't understand how a boy who was so helpful with the animals the family raised could be accused of maliciously killing a dog.

"He's going to be painted as a monster," his father said. "The kid is not a monster. He's a decent kid."

Josh Carncross had brought his girlfriend's dog, "Buffy," a 3-year-old Dachshund to his parents' house in LaFayette on March 2, five days before the dog's death, Jamie Carncross said. He said he didn't notice anything unusual and Buffy wanted to be near his son.

"I'm certain he didn't intentionally do anything mean-spirited or intentional to hurt any animal," Jamie Carncross said.

Jamie Carncross said he does not condone animal abuse. But he also said it's difficult to believe that his son would bring a dog to his parents' house that a few days later, he would be accused of killing.

"We've had every sort of typical pet -- mice, gerbils, hamsters, a cat, dogs. They all lived great lives," he said. "He had his own chickens he took care of... These accusations don't make sense."

Jamie and Terry Carncross visited their son in prison every week and talked to him on the phone every day until he was paroled two months ago.

An Onondaga County Court jury convicted James "Josh" Carncross in December 2006 of aggravated criminally negligent homicide and reckless driving. Carncross, then 20, was accused of speeding on a motorcycle being pursued by Trooper Todeschini when Todeschini lost control of his state police SUV and crashed into a tree at the intersection of Route 91 and Cherry Road in Pompey Hill on April 23, 2006.

Carncross was sentenced to serve seven years in state prison, consecutive to a penalty of 1 1/3 to four years for violating probation in an earlier grand larceny case.

Since he was released from prison, Carncross was doing mechanical work at a local garage and snowplowing, his father said.

"It was tough, but he was doing all right," Jamie Carncross said.
Source: Syracuse.Com - March 10, 2014
Update posted on Apr 20, 2014 - 2:51PM 

References

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