A Michigan State University health physicist is accused of performing sexual acts on a dog.
Joseph A. Hattey, 51, was arraigned Monday, June 4 on two counts of committing a crime against nature — bestiality, according to Attorney General Bill Schuette’s office.
The felony crime is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Hattey is accused of penetrating a dog, a basset hound named Flash, with his hand and his penis, according to the attorney general’s office.
Hattey’s attorney Alexander Rusek declined to comment on the case when reached Monday evening.
He told told the Lansing State Journal earlier in the day “these are merely allegation that have not been proven.”
“Mr. Hattey pleaded not guilty in court today and looks forward to addressing the fact of the matter during the preliminary examination.”
According to court records, the alleged acts occurred on June 7. However, the incident did not take place on MSU’s campus, nor with an animal owned by the university, prosecutors say.
The felony charges were authorized by Magistrate Mark Blumer of 55th District Court.
The investigation was conducted by Ingham County Animal Control, along with the Ingham County Sheriff’s Office.
The dog is reportedly in the custody of animal control.
Per his LinkedIn account, Hattey has worked at MSU since 2002. He started as a laboratory technologist from 2002-2004 before transitioning to a radiation safety technologist in 2014 and then to a health physicist in 2016.
Hattey currently lives in Holt, a community within Delhi Township directly south of Lansing, per court records.
He is due back in court for a preliminary exam on June 14.