Poodle Puncher: Former NYPD Blue Writer Charged With Killing Poodle

Former “NYPD Blue” screenwriter Ted Shuttleworth, 51, is now part of a case that could easily end up on an episode of show. He seems to have answered Det. Danny Sorenson’s question “Where’s a good homicide when you need one?” Shuttleworth has been arrested after punching his poodle in the face on May 29th so hard that it died of a brain injury.


Notably, it was Shuttleworth who took the dog to the veterinarian, who was suspicious and called the police on the traumatic brain injury. The ASPCA took Lola’s remains for a necropsy before the charges were brought. Shuttleworth could be looking at as much as a year in jail.

Self-defense does not appear an option. See People v. Wicker, 357 N.Y.S.2d 5897 (Town Ct. 1974). Lola, the poodle weighed only four pounds. Shuttleworth is 230 pounds.

Cases of these kind often raise the question of when physical punishment of a pet is excessive. Owners are allowed to hit their pets, but obviously not kill them or seriously injure them. Statutes often refer to “cruelly beaten or unjustifiably injured” to qualify the level of prohibited force.

There is a felony provision under NY Code – Section 353-A that does not appear to have been charged here:

A person is guilty of aggravated cruelty to animals when, with no justifiable purpose, he or she intentionally kills or intentionally causes serious physical injury to a companion animal with aggravated cruelty. For purposes of this section, “aggravated cruelty” shall mean conduct which: (i) is intended to cause extreme physical pain; or (ii) is done or carried out in an especially depraved or sadistic manner.

The fact that Shuttleworth brought Lola to the veterinarian probably played a big role in mitigating the charges.

Source: Washington Post

16 thoughts on “Poodle Puncher: Former NYPD Blue Writer Charged With Killing Poodle”

  1. Shuttleworth is my dad’s co-worker. He loved Lola so he wouldn’t of done that. Second of all, why would you punch a dog and take it to the vet. That would give you the risk of being caught. you would’t do that unless you were mentally retarded or crazy or bloodthirsty. Ted isn’t any of those!

  2. so, he can punch a poodle hard enough to kill it. bet that’ll impress the hell out of his new roommate/cellmate.

  3. A hundred and eighty pound man versus a four pound dog.

    Hardly seems like a fair fight.

    I wonder if Mr. Big Time TV Writer would like to get punched in the head by an 8100 pound giant?

  4. Hopefully Mr. Shuttlecock will suffer more than a whack on the behind w/ a rolled up newspaper.

  5. Give us an address so that I can get on the Dogalogue machine and email the network of dog packs. He needs lots of dog poop in his yard. What a face this schmuck has. I bet he is a Willard RepubliCon.

  6. IMO, there is no excuse for cruelty for it’s own sake … to a point. I think we all internally relish the kill of a fly swat, the crackling skwooshy sound of a roach kill, the wispy vortex of a smoldering ant as the result of their magnifying glass dexterity. And in case you think it’s only the insect realm that’s ok let’s not forget kill trapping rodents of all sizes in one’s home and how we may or may not react to skunks, armadillos, or whatever confronts you in high speed traffic.

    And here’s the however. However, we really don’t know what happened in this case and a lot of us make assumptions that this guy is a blood thirsty creep. Maybe he is but what happened? Animals, domestic or otherwise, can attack you at random. I recall poodles being the worst offenders as to biting or nipping away at humans. These dogs have a mouthful of sharp teeth (canines) that can do rapid damage. Maybe this guy had a quick and instinctive angry reaction to Fluffy biting or turning on him out of the blue (Fluffy, the pet that he fed and loved and whom he devoted many a crap collection for on walks). It happens. Oh, you have never disciplined a dog physically after they tore up the new sofa, spread garbage around the kitchen, or committed any other number of heinous pet atrocities? You don’t have an invisible fence device on the pooch to shock them until their sphincter spasms if they cross the line under house arrest? “Don’t taze my master!!” Pet owners, and yes even the relatives and friends that I admire and love, don’t seem to understand, in general, that when a territorial outsider comes to the door and the dog charges to the vanguard barking and bearing it’s teeth – it looks like the dog is bearing it’s weapons at me and in full attack mode. Ask yourself, if this was a human that was charging you with a knife then how would you feel?

    So let’s not pre-judge this event if you can. Incidentally, don’t ever fool yourself that dogs and cats have undying loyalty to you. They follow the food. If master stops feeding them and someone else does … they gone! And rightfully so.

  7. Sounds like a reaction to stepping into a slipper where the puppy peed.

    What Mike said.

  8. While I am a dog lover and owner, I think it is a waste of time and resources to bother with this. That he brought the dog to the vets shows he did not wish to kill the animal, and it will serve no useful purpose for society to lock him up. I think the vet has hit him with a pretty good bill too with all that investigation. The public humiliation is also not going to do him any good either. I say he has been hit with a lot of negative things so that it is a waste of time and resources to proceed further,

  9. The child abuse laws actually arose from the cruelty to animals movement in the middle of the 20th century.

    What surprises me in this case is the punch to the dog’s face! It’s so bizarre and hard to visualize a person doing that. Most dog-owners, when they get mad, will push, shove or kick — who punches a dog’s face?

  10. I omitted stating that this man has a problem with anger management and cruelty.

  11. Having trained a dog and coming from a dog training family, one need not resort to hitting dogs to train them. It’s all about your tone of voice which lets the dog know who’s the boss. Once you are identified as the one who feeds them, almost all only want to please you. Dogs are not stupid, but many humans are.

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