SM CEO Investigated for Animal Cruelty
September 24, 2020
By Sarah Storkin
Video shows the CEO of a Santa Monica environmental consulting firm striking his dog in a luxury condominium building.
"Jeffrey Previte, 46, was caught on security camera thrashing his four-month-old dog Beachy and grabbing the animal by the throat at his apartment in the Seychelle Condominiums building in Santa Monica," reported the Daily Mail.
In the video taken on August 22, the off-duty CEO can be seen yanking the dog off the floor by the scruff of its neck and violently jerking the animal through a door before striking the animal.
"The Santa Monica Police Department has received an outpouring of concern regarding the ongoing animal abuse investigation that has reached worldwide attention," police said in a statement Friday.
"At this time, SMPD can confirm what has been shared by many news outlets," officials said. "Mr. Previte and the animal in question no longer reside in California and have not been in the state since the beginning of our investigation. SMPD Detectives have worked closely with the local agency where the dog resides along with PETA to confirm to the best of their ability that Mr. Previte is no longer in possession of the dog and the dog's wellbeing."
"SMPD personnel have gathered the necessary information including the online video, interviews with neighbors, acquaintances and other witnesses, and will be presenting all the facts to the filing authority regarding criminal charges," officials said.
Civilian officers with the Santa Monica Police Department's Animal Services Unit responded to the 1700 block of Ocean Avenue on Sept. 4 and were given video of the incident and information about the person involved, according to the department. The incident occurred on Aug. 22, according to a report in The Daily Mail.
Officers attempted to meet with the person and check on the condition of the dog, but were unable to locate either the man or the animal, police said.
During a follow-up investigation, officers spoke with the man by phone and received images showing the dog was still in his care. Officers later checked on the condition of the dog seen in the video, police said.
Based on the information received, animal control officers turned their reports over to police detectives who will present their case to the District Attorney's Office for possible animal cruelty charges, the department said.
The breed of the dog was unclear.
Daily Mail shared photos of Previte from Facebook on hunting trips alongside a dead deer that said "I didn't mean to kill Bambi."
"Animal Services Officers continue to work with the individual and local authorities in the area where the animal is believed to now reside to have the dog evaluated by a veterinarian," Santa Monica police said.
Police asked anyone with information about the incident to contact 310-458-8451 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.