Man pleads guilty to leaving dead animals on neighbor’s grave while disguised

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BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — An elderly man accused of leaving more than a dozen dead animals on an old neighbor’s grave pleaded guilty Monday. Joseph Stroud, 79, agreed to a plea deal, lowering his charges from a felony to a misdemeanor.

By taking the plea, Stroud admits to causing more than $2500 in damages to a former neighbor’s headstone by staining it with the blood of dead animals. He was arrested in August after he was caught on surveillance video placing dead animals on the headstone while wearing a wig, police said. He was charged with defacing objects of public respect.

According to a probable cause report filed in the Circuit Court of Benton County, the granddaughter of Fred Allen McKinney contacted police in July after she and her family began finding dead animals on her grandfather’s grave two months prior.

She told police then that her grandfather and Stroud, who had farms next to each other with a shared boundary for several years, “never got along with each other.”

Stroud was given a one-year suspended sentence and will have to pay more than $2,500 in victim restitution. As part of the plea agreement, he also must surrender his driver’s license because of his mental health.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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