Salt Lake County Jail
Cailean Torquil Macdona MacLeod

SALT LAKE CITY — Prosecutors have filed criminal charges against a Layton man accused of torturing his dog before killing it, then allegedly saying he took pleasure in doing it.

Cailean Torquil Macdona MacLeod, 20, was charged in 3rd District Court Tuesday with torture of a companion animal, a third-degree felony, and unlawful detention, a class B misdemeanor.

One of MacLeod's friends contacted police Feb. 12 after MacLeod allegedly made some disturbing comments. MacLeod told his friend that "he had killed his dog and wanted to join the military to kill people," according to charging documents.

He then told his friend that "he enjoyed hurting the dog and he deeply loved to choke her and found pleasure in it," the charges state.

The dog was an Australian shepherd-collie mix, Salt Lake police detective Greg Wilking said Tuesday.

The friend asked police to conduct a welfare check to make sure MacLeod's girlfriend was safe.

When police spoke to the girlfriend, she told officers that their dog, Mocha, had died on Jan. 23 and that MacLeod had initially told her it was due to a blood clot. But on Feb. 12, she said MacLeod changed his story and told her that he had strangled Mocha and "knew he had taken it too far," according to charging documents.

After strangling the dog, MacLeod then cut the dog's tongue twice with a knife and "punched her in the head," the charges state.

Mocha had previously had a leg amputated after MacLeod "threw her down the stairs and she suffered a broken leg," the charging documents say. The girlfriend told police that "Mocha was afraid" of MacLeod.

After admitting to killing the dog, MacLeod "walked her through the apartment complex and stairwell while showing (the girlfriend) areas where he physically abused Mocha," investigators wrote in the charges, describing incidents of kicking, punching, throwing and strangling.

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The girlfriend said MacLeod then grabbed her by the neck to "show her" what he would do to the dog and admitted that he had had thoughts of killing her, too, and that he wanted to break up with her "because he was afraid he would do to her what he had done to Mocha," the charges state.

When interviewed by police, MacLeod "admitted he struggled with the thought of killing people and if he liked it. (He) stated that he wanted to be a drone pilot because they have a high kill ratio," according to charging documents.