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VIRGINIA BEACH (AP) -- Virginia Beach police and the Commonwealth's Attorney office say there wasn't any criminal intent involved in the death of a dog that was left outside a shelter overnight in cold weather.

Police tell media outlets that a caretaker forgot to return the 10-year-old pit bull, named Batman, to the Virginia Beach Animal Care and Adoption Center after taking him outside to a dog run on Feb. 17.

Overnight temperatures were below freezing - in the lower 20s.

A release from the police department issued Monday said 'The caretaker had taken the dog outside in the dog run area for exercise on that Sunday afternoon and forgot to return the dog back into the building before securing for the day.'

A necropsy shows that Batman had heart and lung disease and possibly diabetes. Hypothermia's possible role in the dog's death is inconclusive.

Police are continuing to review the shelter's policies and procedures.

The Animal Care and Adoption Center is under the police department. Officials stress it has no connection to the Va. Beach SPCA.

AP-WF-03-05-13 1155GMT

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