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Neighbors call police on Florida man for choking puppy, threatening to throw it off balcony

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In a span of minutes, three calls came into Boynton Beach police dispatch: two indicating a man was threatening to throw a dog off an an apartment balcony and one saying he was walking along the street “with the dog in his hands as if the dog was being choked.”

The disturbing incident played out about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Monteverde at Renaissance Park apartment complex off North Congress Avenue, south of East Gateway Boulevard.

Arriving officers found a man, later identified as Jonathan Lawrence Goldstein, near the AT&T store at 1880 N. Congress Ave. carrying a small brown dog. “The dog appeared lifeless,” according to the arrest report filed in the case.

The report did not indicate what floor of the multi-story apartment complex that Goldstein had come from.

Six witnesses later gave police sworn statements about what they saw happening to the dog that investigators said was a tan, Maltese-Yorkie mix named “Cinnamon” that was about 4-months-old.

At least two witnesses told investigators they saw Goldstein holding Cinnamon over the balcony in a strangle hold.
When one of them screamed at him he yelled back, “Shut the [expletive] up,” the arrest report said.

Others told police neighbors kept yelling at Goldstein not to hurt the dog as he made his way downstairs and outside while continuing to strangle it. A maintenance technician for the apartment complex said it looked like Goldstein was bringing Cinnamon to his face and blowing air into its mouth even as he continued to have his hands around the dog’s neck.

A Boynton Beach police animal cruelty investigator at the scene confirmed that Cinnamon was dead. The dog’s remains were taken to Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control for an autopsy, the arrest report said.

The report has no explanation for the alleged actions of Goldstein, 36.

He was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail on an animal-cruelty related charged and, on Tuesday, was ordered held on a bond of $10,000.

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