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He burned terrier on backyard grill, pleads not guilty by reason of insanity

He burned terrier on backyard grill, pleads not guilty by reason of insanity
This map shows the approximate location of where a San Mateo man allegedly killed his dog. (Los Angeles Times)

A San Mateo man has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to strangling, cutting and then burning his Jack Russell terrier on a backyard barbecue because he thought it was a demon.

Ryan Gee's plea related to an animal cruelty charge on Friday comes nearly 10 months after he was hospitalized after his dog, Tipsy, was killed, according to San Mateo County District Atty. Steve Wagstaffe.

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Doctors plan to evaluate what Gee's state of mind was during the time of the killing, Wagstaffe said in a statement.

According to prosecutors, Gee, a 27-year-old UC Santa Barbara student, suffered a psychotic breakdown on Jan. 23 and believed his dog was a demon.

Responding to voices telling him to kill Tipsy, prosecutors said, Gee strangled the dog and cut its body with a knife. Tipsy was then burned in a backyard barbecue, where Gee's family discovered the body the next day and called authorities, Wagstaffe said.

Gee, who was living with his mother and sister at the time, was described as being "very close" with the dog.

For breaking news in Los Angeles and throughout California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA. She can be reached at veronica.rocha@latimes.com.

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