A Riverside County judge ordered a Menifee man to stand trial on an animal cruelty charge on Wednesday in connection with the death of a Chihuahua.
District Attorney spokesman John Hall said Larry Edward Jaurequi, 59, is charged with one count of felony animal cruelty along with an enhancement of personal use of a dangerous or deadly weapon.
The charges stem from an incident on Jan. 26, when police were called to the area of High Ridge Circle and Summitrose Drive. Several people had called reporting a man who may have been cruel to an animal.
Officers arrived and found that a Chihuahua, estimated to weigh about six pounds, had been struck by a man using a golf club, sending the dog into the air.
The dog was taken to a nearby animal hospital but died from the injuries sustained by the golf club.
Officers said they arrested Jaurequi, who witnesses said swung the club and hit the Chihuahua.
Jaurequi posted bail and was released the next day.
At a hearing on Wednesday, Superior Court Judge Larrie Brainard determined there was enough evidence in the case for Jaurequi to stand trial on the felony count and the enhancement.
Jaurequi is scheduled to return on July 18 for arraignment, Hall said.
If convicted on the animal cruelty charge and the enhancement, Jaurequi could face a maximum of up to four years in custody.