Not guilty verdict reached in Danville animal cruelty case

A jury has found a Danville man not guilty after a year-long animal cruelty case prompted by 2 Investigates this year. In January, police charged 38-year-old Adam Vavrus with misdemeanor animal cruelty after the story revealed video of him kicking and growling at a couple's dog named Olly.

Dave Brown and Miranda Fulks of Danville hired Vavrus to walk Olly through the popular on-demand dog walking app Wag!. On December 17, their home surveillance camera recorded Vavrus arrive with multiple dogs, which is against Wag! policy, and struggle with Olly. Video shows Olly appear to snap at him when Vavrus then chases and aggressively handles their dog.

 Watched the surveillance video

A Contra Costa County deputy district attorney said a Danville police officer had encountered Vavrus three months before the incident with Olly. Several people at a dog park called police reporting Vavrus being aggressive with animals there. No crime was determined and Vavrus disputes the incident, but the officer felt it was enough to incorporate into Olly's case. 

After the January report, Wag! prohibited Vavrus from using their platform. Neither Wag! or Rover do continuous background checks on the indepedent contractors they hire to perform services. 

Vavrus has maintained his innocence since the incident.