Eastpointe man charged with animal torture

Posted at 5:44 PM, Feb 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-29 17:44:51-05

John Anthony Sporer, 24, has now been charged with animal torture and cruelty after a neighbor in Eastpointe caught him on video assaulting his dog, Meatball.

Meatball was seized by Eastpointe Police last week. He's currently recovering at a local veterinarian.

Tim England, the neighbor who took the incriminating video of Sporer, says Meatball is a very sweet dog, and police say the mastiff-mix will not be returned to Sporer.

At his arraignment Monday morning, Sporer's bond was set at $10,000/10%. He secured his release after a relative posted $1,000.

Monday afternoon, 7 Action News reached Sporer on his cell phone, but he declined to comment. 

Fearing for Meatball's safety, England made the video immediately available to Eastpointe Police.

England also provided video clips to volunteers with Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue when he felt investigators were not acting fast enough to remove Meatball and arrest Sporer.

Eastpointe Police included the following on their Facebook page:

On the day in question, officers were dispatched to the home shortly after the event occurred. The suspect fled the scene and has not been positively identified. We do have a person of interest in this case, but he has not been cooperative with the investigation.

Eastpointe Police later posted:

We appreciate the continued interest in the case of Meatball the Dog. While this is a criminal investigation and we are limited in the information we can release, we can say that Meatball is recovering and the suspect will be turning himself in in the near future. The prosecutor’s office has authorized charges and the case will hopefully be concluded soon. Meatball will not be returned to the person accused of abusing him. Thank you for your comments and support for the Eastpointe Police Department.

Sporer turned himself into police on Monday.

Click on the video above to see Kimberly Craig's report.