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3 men involved in Arkansas deer beating video sentenced

Three Georgia men involved with a videotaped beating of a deer were sentenced in an Arkansas court this week. (KATV photo)

Three Georgia men involved with a videotaped beating of a deer were sentenced in an Arkansas court this week.

The video surfaced in January, showing 20-year-old Joshua Rewis of Villa Rica, Georgia, in the back of a vehicle hitting a deer with a textbook. Rewis was charged with a misdemeanor offense of cruelty to animals and wasting wildlife.

Rewis pleaded guilty Thursday in Stuttgart District Court. He received a $1,000 fine, 60 days in jail, and 60 days suspended sentence, provided he doesn't get into any more trouble or acquire any criminal charges within the year. Rewis was also ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation. For the wasted wildlife charge, Rewis was ordered to pay a $1,250 fine.

Cody Jones of Carrollton, Georgia, and Travis Strickland of Winston, Georgia - both 25 - were also in the vehicle at the time. Jones and Strickland were charged with criminal aiding and abetting. Both men pleaded guilty and were ordered to pay $370 fines.

Johnna Sigler, 19, of Stuttgart, was previously issued a warning citation for aiding and abetting. She was driving the vehicle when the incident occurred.

Arkansas Game and Fish began investigating after being contacted by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources on January 28. The investigation showed the video was made in Arkansas after Rewis told authorities they had hit the deer with their vehicle on Highway 165 near Stuttgart.

Rewis, Jones, and Strickland then loaded the deer into the vehicle, with Rewis saying he planned to "tag the deer and clean it." They never contacted AGFC or the Arkansas County Sheriff's Office regarding the incident.

The video shows the deer becoming active in the vehicle, and that is when Rewis is seen hitting it with a textbook. The three men later took the deer out of the vehicle and left it in a ditch along the highway.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission turned their investigation results over to the Arkansas County deputy prosecuting attorney, who filed the charges against the three men.

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