A Beaufort County man who claimed he did not beat his horse several months ago was found guilty on Tuesday.
Scott Southerland of Pinetown was found guilty of cruelty to animals. He was given a 45 day suspended sentence and put on supervised probation for two years. Southerland must also complete an alcohol assessment, complete recommended treatment and pay $67 restitution to a veterinarian.
Southerland was also fined $250 and ordered to pay court costs.
In April, Southerland was arrested after deputies got a report of a man hitting a horse several times with a fishing rod while in the parking lot of a business in Bath. In an interview, Southerland told WITN News he did not beat the horse, but did use the fishing rod as a "crop" to get the horse under control.
Online court records show Southerland has a pending DWI charge in Beaufort County and driving while license revoked charge in New Hanover County.