A veterinarian deemed “charismatic” was sentenced Friday to more than 22 years in prison for sexually abusing animals, among other charges.
Prentiss Madden appeared in Miami federal court for her conviction. In addition to creating and sharing videos of himself engaging in sex acts with dogs online, Madden was found to be in possession of thousands of images of child pornography, including those of infants. and toddlers.
District Judge Jose Martinez ultimately handed the 40-year-old vet 272 months in prison for his crimes, the most severe sentence allowed by federal guidelines, the Miami Herald reported.
Madden seemed regrettable when he spoke to Judge Martinez, attributing his crimes to past trauma and explaining how he saw his stepfather severely beat his mother as a child.
“It’s never what I planned to be or thought I would be,” Madden said. “It doesn’t represent who I am as a person.”
Michael Mirer, Madden’s lawyer, also cited his client’s childhood trauma and depression. He declined to present these things as an apology for Madden’s actions, however.
“He turned to child pornography because he was clinically depressed,” Mirer told Martinez.
Martinez’s decision also took into account evidence Madden allegedly sexually assaulted a teenager under the age of 16 while he was building his collection of child pornography. This was based on the recommendation of Assistant US Attorney Christopher Hudock, the lead prosecutor in charge of the case. It is not clear from the evidence when precisely this alleged abuse could have occurred.
The mother of the alleged teenager was present in court on Friday. She said that although Madden’s actions were “evil and horrible” in her eyes, she forgave him, citing a passage from the Bible.
Mirer argued that the evidence was not strong enough to be used to lengthen Madden’s sentence. He also asked the judge for a maximum sentence of seven years, so that his client does not spend the rest of his adult life in prison. None of these arguments was accepted.
News week contacted Mirer and Hudock to comment on this story.
Madden previously worked as a medical director at Caring Hands Animal Hospital in Aventura, Florida. The hospital told the Herald that Madden was fired from his post two weeks before his arrest in March, after learning he was under investigation for what he called “heinous and unthinkable crimes”.
Madden was still listed as a medical director on the Caring Hands website at the time of his arrest. His information was quickly withdrawn after the news broke.
In response to Madden’s conviction, Lauren Book, Florida State Senate Minority Leader, herself a Democrat and child abuse survivor, took to Twitter to highlight the known links between child abuse. animals and child abuse.
“This vet sexually assaulted animals and was in possession of child pornography,” Book wrote. “Unfortunately, animal abuse = the best indicator of child abuse – which is why last year we passed a bill requiring animal abuse investigators to be trained to look for signs of child abuse. children. “