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‘I drowned my dog:’ Florida woman accused of killing pet because she was upset with barking

Chocolate lab found floating in bathtub, deputies say

Margaret Kinsella
Margaret Kinsella (Manatee County Sheriff's Office)

MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. – A Florida woman who was upset about her dog barking and biting her drowned the animal in her bathtub, according to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies said on Nov. 5 at about 2 p.m., maintenance crews were working on Margaret Kinsella’s air conditioning unit and saw her take her chocolate Labrador out of the kennel for a walk.

When Kinsella returned, she and the dog went directly to the bathroom and maintenance workers heard Kinsella screaming and the dog making noises, according to the affidavit.

A worker asked Kinsella if she needed help and she refused but a few minutes later, the screaming got louder so the maintenance worker opened the bathroom door and saw the animal floating in the tub, records show.

Deputies said the witness rushed to get the dog out of the bathtub but it was too late.

During the investigation, deputies said Kinsella told them “I drowned my dog” because she was so upset with the animal barking and biting her all the time.

She said she was dealing with anxiety and depression after her husband and father died in the same year and she believed she took out her pent-up frustration on her pet, according to the affidavit.

Kinsella was initially taken to a hospital to receive treatment under the Baker Act then arrested on Dec. 17 after a necropsy was completed on the Lab.

Kinsellla, 43, is facing an aggravated animal cruelty charge.


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