New Jersey

Man Faces Animal Cruelty Charges in Alleged Dog-Flinging Road Rage Fight

A 22-year-old New Jersey man faces animal cruelty charges after video surfaced of him hurling a 12-year-old miniature pinscher from a car during a suspected case of road rage. 

The New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said Tuesday it had filed the charges -- one indictable charge and one civil count -- against Marc Dionne, a Lyft driver.

Gary Keay of Saddle Brook told News 4 Monday that he and his wife were traveling east on Bloomfield Avenue last Wednesday afternoon when a red Honda kept weaving in and out of traffic. Keay says he confronted the driver near a bus stop across from the train station. 

"He got out of his car, jumped on the roof of my car and started stomping on my roof," he said. "Then from that part, I got out of the car to take him off." 

Video posted to YouTube Monday shows part of the violent encounter, but not whatever prompted it. The video shows Keay punching the younger man in the face, knocking off his sunglasses, then tumbles to the pavement. 

Keay's wife Linda watched in horror from inside the white minivan as the brawl unfolded.

"I knew I couldn't leave my granddaughter so I just sat there screaming until I could open the door looking for help," she said. 

Once Keay gets up from the ground, the two confront each other again, video shows. Keay grabs the arm of the younger man, identified in a police report as Marc Dionne, and flings him across the roadway.

Keay then goes to his driver's side door and Dionne goes to the passenger side door, grabs the older man's dog, a pinscher named Daphne, and flings the pooch out. 

Keay is then seen running around the side of the Dionne's car, which is parked closer to the curb, as the dog trots back toward its owner's car, not appearing to be badly hurt. Keay said Daphne has some soft tissue injury but should be fine. 

"The sad part is he tried to hurt me by throwing my dog," said Keay.

Keay's police report alleges Dionne had been weaving in and out of traffic prior to the confrontation. When News 4 approached Dionne for comment Monday, he took off. 

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