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Judge enters not-guilty pleas for suspect in dog dragging

CRANDON, Wis. (AP) — A judge has entered not-guilty pleas on behalf of a northeastern Wisconsin man accused of dragging his dog with a vehicle.

Seventy-five-year-old James Merschdorf of Wabeno stood mute at his first court appearance Wednesday. Merschdorf faces misdemeanor charges of mistreating animals and intentionally leading an animal from a car.

WAOW-TV reports no trial date was set.

The complaint says Merschdorf told investigators he didn’t know he had dragged the beagle named Josephine until he stopped at a convenience store June 29. A witness said the dog was tied to the car’s passenger mirror.

The 6-year-old dog is in veterinary care in Rhinelander.

Katie Brueggen, one of the veterinarians who helped treat the dog, tells WSAW-TV the beagle “had essentially major road rash along the entire right half of her body.”

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