Ponce Inlet man accused of beating dog to death argues police illegally entered his property

PONCE INLET, Fla. — A Ponce Inlet man accused of beating his dog to death in April was in court Tuesday arguing that police did not have enough cause to enter his property the day of the beating.

The standing-room-only hearing in Volusia County concerned Travis Archer’s arrest in the death of his 9-month-old Labrador.

Officers said they entered Archer’s property without his consent because they were concerned for the well-being of the dog.

Related story:

In Ponce Inlet Police Department body-camera video, Archer can be heard telling the officers to stay out of his home.

“No, no, no,” Archer said. “You guys don’t need to be in the house unless you have a warrant.”

The officers entered, though, and found the dog beaten to death in the backyard, officials said.

A photo of the dead dog was shown in court, causing many people at the hearing to cover their faces and moan at the sight.

Archer’s defense argued that officers still did not have enough probable cause to enter the property.

“The officer hears a comment, he hears a sound that he describes as flesh being struck and sees a person pacing around. That’s all that they have,” said Archer’s attorney, Aaron Delgado.

Archer, who was charged with aggravated animal cruelty, faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

The judge in his case is expected to make a decision within 10 days on whether or not officers had a right to enter his home.