Facebook/Jill Burgett  Jill Burgett’s dog Jax was killed in 2021 by Jaron James Whitley of Hartselle. Whitley pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 10 years in prison March 6.  

Hartselle man sentenced to 10 years behind bars after killing dog  

By Staff Reports  

A Hartselle man was sentenced to a decade behind bars after pleading guilty to killing his ex-girlfriend’s dog. 

Jaron James Whitley, 46, was arrested for killing Jill Burgett’s dog Jax in April 2021. He pleaded guilty March 6.  

Burgett, who lives in Arab, told authorities at the time Whitley, who had once been bitten by Jax, killed the dog with a wrench and dropped his body off on Best Road in Hartselle wrapped in a duffle bag. He was arrested and charged with aggravated animal cruelty April 13, 2021.  

Whitley entered a blind guilty plea in August 2022. March 6, he was sentenced in the Marshall County Circuit Court to 120 months in prison, with credit for time served. Court records show his sentence will be split between serving time behind bars followed by 60 months of probation. 

Whitley was also sentenced to anger management and mental health evaluation and treatment. He is prohibited from initiating contact with Burgett.  

Additionally, court documents show Whitley is ordered to pay court fees and restitution totaling $1,216.23 to Burgett. 

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