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Man Pleads Guilty to Animal Cruelty

A puppy from Northumberland County captured the hearts of many of our viewers after it was thrown off an embankment earlier this year.

Monday morning, a man from Shamokin pleaded guilty to the crime.

Michael Wolfe admitted to throwing the three-month-old pit bull off an embankment in January, and said it was dark out so he couldn’t see how steep the hill was. A Northumberland County judge gave Wolfe the maximum sentence, three months of house arrest and two years probation. He is not allowed to own any pets until his sentence is over.

He admitted throwing his three-month-old pit bull off an embankment in Coal Township in January.  The dog, now named Harper, captured the hearts of people all over the country.

Cheryl Hill is from Mostly Mutts, a no-kill shelter in Sunbury.  Volunteers at the shelter have been taking care of Harper.  As part of Wolfe’s sentence, he must write a letter to the shelter.

“I thought that was a different kind of condition that I never would have expected.  He’s talking about being remorseful.  I think that’s great, too,” Hill said.

The dog at the center of it all, Harper the pit bull, has come a long way in the past four months.  Harper is very friendly, and weighs almost 60 pounds.

“She’s very playful, very puppy-like.  Chews up everything, plays with other dogs,” Hill said.

Hill said she still has a long road ahead of her.

“She still can’t see, still stumbles every once in a while.  She can’t balance herself very well, but she’s doing well.  I’m really pleased with everything.  I’m kind of glad this is all over,” Hill said.

Wolfe’s ex-girlfriend, Angelina Coladonato, was charged with lying to police.  She is expected to plead guilty in July. 

Hill said Harper will have another surgery soon.  After she recovers from that, she may be put up for adoption.


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