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A former York City man captured on video beating his dog is another step closer to trial.

Luis Cruz-Padro waived his formal court arraignment, defense attorney David Erhard confirmed.

His first pretrial conference is scheduled for April 19, according to court records.

Cruz-Padro, 28, recently of West Manchester Township, remains free on bail on a misdemeanor charge of animal cruelty, lodged after a 2½-minute videotape of him beating Bugz the pit bull in a York City back yard Dec. 12 went viral on Facebook.

Bugz, who had been owned by Cruz-Padro's fiancee, suffered a broken rib and bruising to his side; he fully recovered, according to Melissa Smith, executive director of the York County SPCA. She has called the beating "horrendous."

Bugz was adopted by a new family on Jan. 21, she has said. Cruz-Padro's fiancee also relinquished ownership of Bugz' daughter, who also has been adopted and is now named Angel.

Officials said Cruz-Padro punched, hit and whipped Bugz in the first block of East South Street. During some of that beating, Bugz was tied to a pole so he couldn't escape.

Cruz-Padro did not deny the accusations against him when he spoke with The York Dispatch less than two weeks after the incident.

He maintains he lost his cool when the dog snapped at his baby.

Cruz-Padro said that since the video of the beating went viral on Dec. 14, he and his family have received a number of threats, including from one man who pointed a gun at him before the SPCA took custody the dogs. He and his family fled their York City home and moved in with friends to escape the threats, he said.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com.

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