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Detroit Man Accused of Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence in Custody

DETROIT – Attorney General Dana Nessel today announced that a Detroit man accused of torturing a small dog as part of his ongoing abuse and harassment of his former girlfriend, has been extradited from Ohio. 

Julius Holley, 55, of Detroit was arraigned in the 36th District Court in Wayne County on the following charges:

  • One count of second-degree home invasion, a 15-year felony and/or $3,000;
  • One count of first-degree killing/torturing of animals, a 10-year felony and/or $5,000;
  • One count of larceny in a building, a four-year felony and/or $5,000.00, and;
  • One count of stalking, a one-year misdemeanor and/or $1,000.00.

The Department of Attorney General alleges Holley broke into his ex-girlfriend’s home and took her Yorkshire Terrier mix dog, along with other items from the house.  Holley then sent his ex-girlfriend videos of him beating and torturing the dog.  Ultimately, the dog was left in a bucket next to a house and was taken by Michigan Humane to ensure it could not be abused again.

In Michigan, a person that tortures or kills a pet with the intent to cause mental suffering or distress to a person, or to exert control over a person, is guilty of a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison.  

The 2019 law, MCL 750.50b(3), recognizes the connection between animal abuse and domestic violence and provides law enforcement with the tools necessary to hold dangerous perpetrators accountable.

“Those who attempt to evade law enforcement will be found and held accountable,” said Nessel. “I want to thank Michigan Humane for the programming and support they provide to victims of domestic violence who might otherwise be reluctant to leave a dangerous situation if that means having to leave behind their pets.”

Holley received a $200,000 cash/surety bond. He was also arraigned on an outstanding 2019 warrant and received a $50,000 cash/surety bond on that case.

Holley is scheduled for a hearing in front of Judge Williams on November 21 at 9:30 a.m.

"Michigan Humane is proud to partner with the Michigan Department of the Attorney General to offer not only cruelty investigation but also a safe haven for animals in times of crisis,'" said Michigan Humane President and CEO Matt Pepper. "I'm happy to say that the dog involved in this case, after receiving medical care from our team, is doing very well and has returned home."

Michigan Humane provides a Safety Net pet fostering program for people who need a safe place to temporarily house their pets.  People in need of the service, or those looking to volunteer to foster animals in these situations, should call the MIchigan Humane at 866-648-6263.

Portions of this project are funded in part by Grant No. WE AX 0030 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.


Please note: A criminal charge is merely an allegation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. The Attorney General's office does not provide booking photos.

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