A Virginia man who had eight Rottweilers was convicted on two counts of animal cruelty Tuesday after being accused of performing sex acts on dogs, the Richmond-Times Dispatch reported.
Stephen Matthew Taylor, 31, entered an Alford plea for the charge of inflicting pain and causing the death of an animal, a felony, and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor animal cruelty charge.
An Alford plea allows a defendant to acknowledge that the prosecution has sufficient evidence for a conviction without admitting guilt.
According to Nael A. Abouzaki, an assistant commonwealth’s attorney for Henrico County, Taylor confessed to police that he performed oral sex on one of the dogs. He said that during a search of the home last November, authorities found 171 images of bestiality on a hard drive at the defendant’s home, 10 of which showed him performing oral sex on a Rottweiler.
“I just don’t have any words,” Henrico Circuit Judge James Yoffy said. “This is disgusting.”
Abouzaki said the eight dogs were seized from Taylor’s home, and two of them had to be put down.
Taylor disputed the charges after his court appearance, calling them lies and saying he only entered pleas because he didn’t think he would get a fair trial in the county. His lawyer, William T. Linka, said the defendant disagrees with the claim that it’s him in the pictures.
Taylor was released on bond and must undergo a court-ordered psychosexual evaluation, as well as stay away from pets. He will be sentenced on Nov. 14, with the maximum sentence for the felony being five years in prison. The misdemeanor carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison.
Following the search of the home, which authorities performed after getting a warrant for child pornography and crimes against nature, Taylor’s roommate, Craig Michael Knox, was arrested and charged with raping a 9-year-old-boy, as well as other sex offenses.