WTOC: Hilton Head man threw neighbor's dog off balcony

April 29, 2013 

A 30-year-old Hilton Head Island man was arrested and charged with animal cruelty Friday after allegedly throwing his neighbor's yorkiepoo off a second story balcony in the Palmetto Bay Villas a few days earlier.

The neighbor, Ryan Heilman, says helped his neighbor fix rigging on his boat on April 23.

They were having a beer on Heilman's patio afterward. Heilman said he stepped away from the balcony for a moment then saw his dog, Hershey, flying over the balcony railing.

"When I went down, I immediately locked the sliding door, locked him out there, ran down and got my dog and he was bubbling blood from his nose," Heilman said. "He had an abrasion on his head and he wasn't moving very well."

A witness told Beaufort County Sheriff's deputies that when Heilman went back in the home, the man began complaining about the dog, which was sitting on his lap, before he tossed it over the balcony and onto concrete steps below.

Heilman said the dog had unresponsive pupils but no broken bones and appears to be making a full recovery.

The man is due in court May 15.

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