A businessman was arrested in Puerto Rico for allegedly shooting and killing a dog that had stolen his ball on a golf course, police said Monday.
Former Long Island resident Salil Zaveri, 60, is accused of gunning down the pooch on Saturday at the well-known Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Resort in coastal Río Grande.
He apparently became enraged after the dog snatched his ball near the 17th hole, local newspaper El Nuevo Día reported.
Police said Zaveri allegedly pulled out a 9mm gun and shot the animal at least twice in front of several horrified golf players, the report said.
Then, “He got in the cart and kept playing,” said Gabriel Redondo Miranda, the prosecutor in the case.
Cops released a photo of Zaveri getting cuffed near the 18th hole.
“Thank you to MY police officers, who today were the voice of justice for a puppy, whom an unscrupulous, killed viciously, for no reason and in a clear disregard for life,” Police Commissioner Antonio López Figueroa said in a Facebook post.
Zaveri, a sales and marketing consultant and the CEO of Zaveri Consulting, LLC, was released on $60,000 bond, but his passport and driver’s license were seized.
He didn’t return a request for comment on Monday.
But in a statement to a CBS correspondent, Zaveri said the shooting was in self-defense after the dog chased one of his friends and then raced toward him and tried to get into his golf cart.
“I couldn’t outrun it because the distance between us was too short,” the statement said.
“I took the first shot when the dog was less than 10 feet away and the dog rolled over but may have died slowly so I got out of the cart and took two more shots out of mercy.”
The suspect is expected back in court on May 19.