JAMESTOWN, N.Y. (AP) — A 47-year-old western New York man has been charged with felony animal cruelty for hanging a dog from a tree.

A passer-by discovered the dead brown-and-white pit bull in a wooded area in Jamestown Monday night. Police believe it had been there for several months.

Robert S. Overton Jr. turned himself in on Thursday and was charged with cruelty.

Overton told WGRZ in Buffalo that the female dog was sick and had bitten him and his young daughter on three occasions. He said made a "life or death decision" to protect his family. Overton said he loves animals and feels bad about what happened.

Overton was arraigned and sent to the Jamestown city jail without bail.

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