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Fidel Lopez charged with sexual assault, animal abuse following death of Estrella, a Lhasa Apso mix

MCSO PHOTO - Fidel LopezA local man has been arrested after police say he raped a dog, which had to be euthanized due to its internal injuries.

Fidel Lopez, 51, was arrested Wednesday, Feb. 13 on charges of first-degree aggravated animal abuse and sexual assault on an animal.

The small dog — a Lhasa Apso mix named Estrella — was rushed to Dove Lewis animal hospital Nov. 18 by her owner after she noticed the dog was hiding behind furniture and had obvious injuries to her hindquarters.

A veterinarian, Dr. Bildfell, determined Estrella had suffered "significant" internal injuries puncturing her organs, police say. Estrella's owner asked that a rape test be conducted, saying that her fiancé, Lopez, had displayed "potential bestiality tendencies."

The incidents included "exposing his genitals to the dogs and bragging about watching another person have sexual relations with a dog and then asking if she ever considered getting a dog bigger than Estrella," according to a probable cause affidavit.

Lopez allegedly admitted to officers that he was drunk and angry at his girlfriend for not responding to his phone messages, so he raped the dog.

"He said the dog seemed fine at the time," according to court records.

Estrella's owner told police she was concerned for the safety of the animals in her home and said the defendant was lying about his use of alcohol and cocaine.

Lopez, who remains behind bars at Inverness Jail at this time, told jailers he completed the sixth grade and worked for Original Pancake House.

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