Arrest warrant issued in Charleston West Side dog hanging incident

John Davante “Tay” Copening Jr. is wanted for animal cruelty after a dog was found hanging from a tree Tuesday on Charleston's West Side. (Charleston Police Department)

An arrest warrant has been issued for a man after a dog was found hanging from a tree on Charleston’s West Side.

Charleston police said an arrest warrant has been issued for John Davante “Tay” Copening Jr., 23, who is wanted for animal cruelty.

The arrest warrant was issued Thursday after a dead dog was found hanging in a tree Tuesday on Madison Street.

Police said about 8 p.m. Tuesday a Charleston Police Department humane officer was called to the 1100 block of Madison Street for a report of witnesses hearing a dog squealing like it was being beaten near the railroad tracks.

Witnesses said when they went to see what was making the noise, they found a female pit bull hanging from a tree.

During the investigation, police found a surveillance video that showed a person of interest walking the dog in the area at about 7:30 p.m. The same video shows the person walking back through the area about 10 minutes later without the dog.

Police said Copening may have left the area and maybe with a female named Sydney Delaney, 21.

Anyone with information on Copening's whereabouts should call the Charleston Police Department at 304-348-8111.

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