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NASCAR Cup Series director temporarily 'steps back' after being charged with felony animal cruelty

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NASCAR Cup Series managing director Jay Fabian has a September court date regarding charges of animal cruelty.

Fox Sports reported Wednesday that Fabian had "stepped away" from his role as the Cup Series director ahead of a Sept. 27 court date in Mecklenburg County. Per the North Carolina courts site, Fabian has two felony case numbers in the system and a misdemeanor case set for that day. 

NASCAR said in a statement to Fox that Fabian had "stepped back" from his role until the case was resolved. If a driver or crew member for a team in NASCAR had been facing similar or lesser criminal charges, he or she would be named on NASCAR's penalty report and officially suspended from the series for violating its code of conduct. But since Fabian works for NASCAR, the sanctioning body is treating him differently. 

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According to Fox, which obtained the charging documents, Fabian is accused of mistreating his dogs. One of them died. 

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The felony charges Fabian is facing concern North Carolina statute 14-360(B). That statute states that "If any person shall maliciously torture, mutilate, maim, cruelly beat, disfigure, poison, or kill, or cause or procure to be tortured, mutilated, maimed, cruelly beaten, disfigured, poisoned, or killed, any animal, every such offender shall for every such offense be guilty of a Class H felony."

The misdemeanor offense is for an alleged violation of statute 14-360(A), which states "If any person shall intentionally overdrive, overload, wound, injure, torment, kill, or deprive of necessary sustenance, or cause or procure to be overdriven, overloaded, wounded, injured, tormented, killed, or deprived of necessary sustenance" they would be found guilty of the misdemeanor.

Fabian was named the director of the Cup Series ahead of the 2019 season after he oversaw post-race inspection at NASCAR’s research and development center. 

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