Viral video prompts investigation

Chico Police Department sends potential animal abuse case to the DA’s Office

The Chico Police Department announced this week that it is submitting an investigation into a potential case of animal abuse to the Butte County District Attorney’s Office, following video of the alleged beating that went viral earlier this month.

CPD’s investigation centers on the treatment of a husky by its 25-year-old owner, Andrew Lavato, who, in surveillance video, is seen dragging the dog, throwing it into a dumpster and then allegedly hitting it with a stick. Lovato told Action News Now that he was not beating the dog, but rather beating the sides of the dumpster to discipline it.

On Saturday (Nov. 26), CPD officers located the dog at a local shelter and took it for a veterinary exam. It was found to be healthy and injury-free, the release reads.