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ONLY ON 3: Man arrested for allegedly strangling Chihuahua

READ MORE: Man arrested for allegedly strangling Chihuahua

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -– For many people our pets are like our family and we mourn their loss very difficulty. What would you do if your dog was brutally killed?

Friday, Cory Morgan Gray, 24, allegedly strangled his girlfriend's six-pound Chihuahua while she was in class at Cape Fear Community College.

"I found him there, and I found little Charlie. He just looked like so in pain and so tense, and he just looked so pitiful and helpless," said Jenna Branham, the dog's owner.

Gray was booked on preliminary charges of felony cruelty against animals. After spending one hour in jail Gray was released on a $5,000 secure bond.

"If Charlie had been a person, it would be murder, but it's not. It's animal cruelty," Donna Branham said. "It's not animal cruelty. It's animal murder. He murdered this dog."

The Branham family is trying to raise awareness about animal cruelty cases such as this by starting an online petition to strengthen animal cruelty laws.

Click here for more information on their Charlie's Law.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.



An update on mr gray; he pled guilty to felony animal cruelty with a deferred judgement. He was given 24 months probation- supervised. That means if he manages to go 2 years without getting caught drinking or doing drugs and commits no other crimes, the animal cruelty charge will be dropped from his record. If he violates his probation he can be taken back to court and his confession can be used against him in court. Those of you that know Cory and said he'd never hurt an animal, he ADMITTED in court that he killed Charlie!! It's been almost a year since Charlie was murdered by Cory. Lets turn him into the police the next time he's at a Carolina beach bar drinking and getting high. Don't let him get away without punishment. I saw a vine video with him partying. I know he's just going on with his life without any consequences. Call the cops and turn him in!!!
RIP little Charlie. You are not forgotten.

So, she did it to her own

So, she did it to her own dog ? No wait, someone broke in, and did it. Better yet, maybe the dog committed suicide, by choking himself to death. His life is ruined.... Boo Hoo. What about Charlie's life ? Again, it is 1000X worse, to kill a child. But this is really making my blood boil.

Do you know her? I do, and

Do you know her? I do, and she loved that dog. Do you know Cory? The police investigated and got a warrant for his arrest. Crime Scene came and investigated, they showed that on the news. You can't get a warrent for someones arrest without hard evidence. And the news didn't report the story until after he was arrested and released on bond. aren't the brightest crayon in the box. Go smoke a blunt with Cory!

yes i do

The police investigate a lot of things, they couldnt just leave with out taking someone with them you know how bad that would look to the media i mean look what the media has done to this story... i could tell a cop that my next door neighbor came over and assaulted me with no hard evidence and they would take them in. The girl wasnt there she dont know crap...If i was them i would worry about him sueing me...



What he do? If it were

What he do? If it were human???? If my grandmother had male genitals she would be my grandfather. The world doesn't revolve around if's. Its some animal which we all eat every single day. Whats the big deal. Seems like an easy nonsense story for reporters to make a big deal of and tons of irrelevant paperwork for some bored police and court appointed employees.

I agree with your post 100%.

I agree with your post 100%. Hundreds, if not thousands of hogs and cows are slaughtered daily. Where are all these SO-CALLED animal lovers when these animals are being lined up to be killed, they are animals too!!!!

Ignorant !

If you don't know the difference between livestock that is raised for food and a PET that is raised with love in your home, then I really really feel sorry for you.

Hogs and cows may not be

Hogs and cows may not be pets but they are living, breathing animals just like a dog or cat!!

I knew this guy personally too, still doesn't make it right!

I grew up with Cory, thought he was a very nice guy and so did everyone else all through elementary/middle/high school. Just because someone is a "good guy" doesn't mean they are not capable of commiting a crime like this. Normal people snap and make mistakes everyday, but it still doesn't make it okay. It is also not okay that the laws regarding animal cruelty are so lenient in North Carolina. I will allow the judge to do the judging but I will also be praying for stiff punishment and justice for the family who lost a FAMILY MEMBER that day! It's so tragic and unthinkable, and my heart hurts for this family.

The accused has been charged

The accused has been charged with felony animal cruelty. He has not yet been sentenced or "punished." Him being bailed out of jail after an hour has nothing to do with the outcome of this case. He is facing up to a year in prison, fines, probations, etc. I think that is fairly extensive.

I feel very sorry for the family's loss, but it is NOT the same thing as a child or a human. If that were the case, every time a cat darted in front of a car, should we charge the driver with manslaughter? Or perhaps a hit and run if they dont stop? No. That is ridiculous.

Clearly this individual needs some serious HELP. A healthy and stable individuals do not do such things. I doubt he is actually a monster or a terrible person. Ms. Branham seems like an intelligent and strong enough young lady and I doubt she would have had such a serious and lengthy relationship with a bad hearted, evil person.

I think this petition needs to get more specific about what it is trying to achieve. What harsher punishments are you looking for? What are the current punishments? Dont just post statistics about serial killers.

Perhaps the law could be adjusted to include mandatory immediate mental evaluation? And therapy, counseling, and anger management to be included in the sentencing?

We need to HELP correct this situation not just punish and berate.

Since when is a child not

Since when is a child not considered a human? SMH. A cat darting out in front of a car is an accident. Right? A grown man picking up a chihuahua and strangling the poor creature is not an accident. Right? You are obviously not an animal advocate. He IS a terrible person and the only ridiculous thing here is your opinion. Geeze, please.



A child is considered a human. Sorry, if my wording confused you.

I also wasnt comparing what has been allegedly done here to simply accidentally running over an animal. I was more suggesting that if we were to treat animals that were intentionally killed the same as humans that were intentionally killed then in the name of legal fairness we would also have to treat animals that were accidentally killed the same as we treat humans that are accidentally killed. Our legal system IS supposed to be fair and just, right?

I dont believe in labeling a person as a terrible. I do believe that this death is a terrible thing. And if it happened in the way that has been described then those ACTIONS are terrible, horrific even.

I love animals. I've donated to the ASPCA since I got my first bank account ten years ago. I also love humans. I believe in HUMAN rights and ANIMAL rights.

Im sorry if you see my opinion as ridiculous, but thats the beautiful things about America we are each allowed to have our own. It's just a shame we cant be more respectful when sharing them.


I have not posted 1 thing about retaliation against this man. He will have his day in court. I only said he IS a terrible person for what he did. It's up to the court to decide,not me. But I'm entitled to my opinion as well as the next person. People that cause an accidental death of a person,are not found guilty. I'm sure the ASPCA greatly appreciate your donations. Simply put, I read your post exactly as you posted it. I stand by what I said, a grown man that strangles a 6lb chihuahua is indeed a terrble person. People have to understand that they are accountable for their deeds and Cory Gray has to convince the court that what he did was right and I don't think he will be able to do that. Will he be executed or spend life in prison, of course not.

so with you

so with you

Couldn't Agree More!

Couldn't Agree More!

This is ridiculous. A

This is ridiculous. A chihuahua, seriously...this man is sick, doesn't matter what his hair looks like Jess a murderer..animals are living things..Dickens me.

A white guy with dreadlocks and a neckbeard...

there's your trouble Ms. Branham. Stay far away from any white guy with dreadlocks and a neckbeard. A black guy with dreadlocks looks cool. A white guy with dreadlocks looks like they need a bath and better parenting.

The laws need to be changed for animal cruelty because any "person" who could squeeze the life out of an animal (or worse) is insane and we can expect worse from them. They need to be removed from society. If it is capable of suffering, we as human beings need to re-examine how we deal with those who torture it.

RIP little Charlie. I'll always remember your story.

Uhm no

Uhm no one looks cool with dreads. They all look like idiots.


Wow...such ignorance. You must not have been around an educated diverse population where doctors, lawyers, teachers, etc have dreads. You show how limited you are by your comments. There are people who keep their dreads neat and clean, regardless of race. Stop stereotyping, instead experience and learn about other cultures and you won't be making general, bias statements as the one above. Best wishes for you.

Michael Vick is a low-life

Michael Vick is a low-life scumbag. He enjoys watching dogs kill each other. He enjoys watching others suffer. I wish some defensive lineman would break his coward neck.

Just like Michael Vick, this loser needs to go to prison. I have 3 dogs, and I love them, like they were kids. They are so innocent. Even my 1/2 pit bull, is the sweetest guy in the world.

Don't get me wrong. Human life is more precious then animal life. Thank God she didn't have a child around for this coward, loser, to abuse.

Maybe the dog bit him, and

Maybe the dog bit him, and he fought back. Chihuahua's can be mean dogs and the key word is allegedly strangled. Innocent until proven guilty in the good old USA.

Gee, how could the dog have

Gee, how could the dog have bitten him THROUGH THE CRATE?! The dog was left in his crate, this bum went and got him out of his crate to kill him. Excuse ne, allegedly, He squeezed the life out of that poor puppy with his hands wrapped around charlies neck! Allegedly. I just wonder how long it took for the little 6 lb dog to lose conscienceness, stop fighting for air and finally die. 30 seconds? 60? Maybe 90? This murderer had time to change his mind and walk away. But he didn't. Allegedly. Oh wait, we know he didn't walk away! Cory was the only person in the house from what I was told, so thatleaves cory or cory? Huh, I think cory did it! I know the scumbag, the hot girlfriend and I knew charlie. I prefered to spend time with Charlie over cory anyday. Cory is a waste of human flesh. 24 years old, a mooch, works 4 months out of the year at a locally owned donut shop, lives at home, has no car, the other 8 months of the year he does nothing. His parents are enablers and should be ashamed of their parenting skills for allowing their 24 year old son to live at home and not work OR go to school. Jenna will be so much better off without this scumbag in her life. She deserves to be treated like the awesome girl she is by a great guy! Start lining up guys. Cory had it so good with her but didn't deserve such a great girl. RIP Charlie. I won't forget you.

If you knew cory then you

If you knew cory then you obviously would know he wouldnt do such a thing, the kid is harmless, may be a little misguided but the kid wouldnt harm a thing. Im sure we are not hearing the whole story and the news and everyone else is making him sound like a terrible person. Shame on you for judging someone when you have only heard what the news and everyone else has said. Real mature...


"The dog was left in his crate, this bum went and got him out of his crate to kill him."

"Cory was the only person in the house from what I was told, so thatleaves cory or cory?"

How do you know he took him out of his crate and killed him if he were the only person there? If there were others there to witness him doing it, or a nanny cam/video of him doing it, then you'd have more of a leg to stand on. Who says Cory didn't have a friend over while everyone was gone? Who knows if the dog wasn't dead before Cory was left alone with it? You only "know" what you've heard. You weren't there, you don't even know if Cory was really there. You don't know anything because everything is hearsay.

i seriously doubt that this

i seriously doubt that this 6 pound chihuahua was so mean that he had to strangle it to DEATH. that means you would have to hold your hands there for about a minute for him to die. if he couldn't fight off a six pound chihuahua then he is a sad excuse for a man

Great guy?!

He's a great guy?! He killed a defenseless animal! I don't care what you look like but if you hurt an innocent animal you're on my s---t list!! And you need to go to jail for a very long time!!!hopeflly, then someone will beat the h--ll out of him every day!


By the looks of his hair style, the strangler of the chihuahua seems to put great emphasis on the "cool factor."

What could possibly more cool than dreadlocks on a white guy. So original. So creative. So . . . well, cool.

I give him an A in the cool category and an F in the basic morality category.

A question arises: Was his strangling of the chihuahua misplaced anger?

This man is dangerous.


someone previously hit the nail on the head with my feelings....

"A question arises: Was his strangling of the chihuahua misplaced anger?
This man is dangerous."

I totally agree. What a scumbag. I fully feel what he did to the dog was meant (at least in his sad eyes) to be an example of what he is capable of. He needs to have his head examined.
P.S. while you exam his head please wash it with plentiful soap. Thanks

Figures someone was going to

Figures someone was going to stereotype him because of his hairstyle ...I have tattoos and piercings ! What's that make me?? I know him personally and he's a GREAT guy give u whatever u need if he has it. Why don't you let the one that is suppose to do the judging do just that!