“I’m sorry that it ended in a brawl but the dog was going to die.”
Jena Malone helped rescue an allegedly abused dog on Tuesday — which resulted in the dog’s owner being chased and beaten.
Video shared by NBC LA showed the moment a group of witnesses near Sunset Boulevard banded together to apprehend a man they said was abusing his pet, as they dished out a beating of their own.
Among the witnesses interviewed was the Hunger Games star, who later revealed on Twitter that she was the first to give chase.
“This was really scary. I saw a man kicking repeatedly a small dog on the sunset, yanking him up in the air and absolutely choking the dog,” she said, sharing the news link.
“I yelled at him to stop from my car but he wouldn’t. I got out of my car to try and get the dog but he started running.”
“So I started chasing him. I saw other people watching on the street upset, as they must have seen the same abhorrent behavior I witnessed, so I tried to signal a man in an orange vest to run with me to chase him.”
“Cause at that point I really didn’t think I was going to be able to get the dog back by myself. After another block of chasing him down I looked back and there were 5 other men behind me pursuing him. Which felt like a miracle.”
“So at this point I held back and let them take the lead as I have no business trying to restrain a full grown man. I went back to get my car (it was still running) and drove to see if they caught him.”
She said that about 6 blocks from where the chase started, a big group had gathered, and it appeared the man no longer had the dog. But he was about to get something else instead.
As the video shows, three men caught up with the alleged abuser, throwing him to the ground and beating him up. One is battering him with a wooden stick, while another even dishes out a head stomp.
“So I pulled over to make sure that dog was going to be cared for,” Jena continued. “I didn’t see the brawl but I was told that the man did not give up the dog without a fight.”
“And this is the tail end of a heated fight that ensued. The cops came and took the guy. I waited with dog til another cop came to take them to the hospital. The dog was covered in filth and looked like it had been not taken care of for months.”
NBC even interviewed the alleged abuser, while he was still splayed on the ground.
“That’s why I did it – that’s my momma’s dog, and he should have obeyed me,” he explained.
“He alright, nothing wrong with him.”
In a somewhat abrupt bit of editing, the news report cut from an interview with the dog-rescuer describing the “citizen’s arrest”, to a lawyer confirming that a prosecutor could technically bring charges against him.
“Yeah, mmm-hmm…. it’s a little much,” criminal law attorney Andrew Leventhal can be heard musing as he watches the footage.
He said the altercation leading up to the rescue of the dog was probably fair — but continuing to beat the man after the dog was safe raised some legal questions.
In the end, LAPD opted not to file charges against the apparent rescuers.
The unidentified dog-owner however was arrested on suspicion of animal cruelty.
As for the dog? Jena — who was not involved in the minute-long beating — said he had been treated in hospital for a fractured rib, bone breaks in it’s hind legs and another fracture in its right paw.
“It was absolutely horrific seeing an animal treated this way,” she wrote. “I’m sorry that it ended in a brawl but the dog was going to die. No question. I can’t imagine the level of torture it had suffered until this point. And now it’s safe in a hospital. Still no word on its owner.”