|Ricky Carter Arrington will serve 30 days in jail|
Wednesday, June 11, 2014
By KEN BRADLEY - Staff Writer
A Ferrum man was found guilty Monday in Franklin County Circuit Court of animal cruelty in connection with a dog with a severe skin disease.
Ricky Carter Arrington, 48, will serve 30 days of an eight-month sentence. He was also ordered to pay a $250 fine.
Arrington was found guilty of depriving an animal of necessary food, drink, shelter or emergency veterinary treatment.
However, Circuit Court Judge Stacy Moreau found Arrington not guilty of a charge of depriving a companion animal of adequate care, treatment and needed veterinary care to prevent suffering.
Arrington and his wife testified that the stray dog did not belong to Arrington.
Moreau said the commonwealth had not proven beyond reasonable doubt that Arrington was the owner of the dog.
In January, Arrington was indicted on two animal cruelty charges. However, the indictments were nolle prossed (dropped) in March because Arrington's attorney, Melissa Keen, had not received all the documents she needed prior to the trial. He was indicted again on the same two charges in April, and a trial date was set for June 9.
The female Pit Bull mix in this case had to be euthanized because of her debilitated condition, according to Capt. Marvin Woods, who recently retired from Franklin County Animal Control.
Dr. David Rolfe testified Monday that the dog was severely emaciated and had an offensive odor. The skin on the dog's hind legs was sloughing off because of a severe skin disease.
The dog also had multiple bite wounds and sores all over her torso and extremities, the veterinarian said. The dog appeared to suffer from malnutrition. Her pelvis was sticking out and her wounds were infected.
The dog was discovered lying on a couch on the front porch of Arrington's residence on Sawmill Road on Nov. 6, 2013, when Woods went to investigate a report of roofing shingles being dumped on the property, Woods said. The dog did not get off the couch, and Woods left the residence because no one was home.
When Woods returned on Dec. 20, 2013, the dog was in the same spot on the couch, he said. When the dog got up, Woods saw the condition of the animal and asked Arrington how long the dog had been there.
Arrington testified Monday at his trial that the dog had been there for two and a half months, and that he had given her a shot of penicillin. But he said "the dog ain't mine."
On the property, Woods found 13 other Pit Bulls, he said, all but four had dog tags.
The diseased animal was transported by Woods to the Franklin County Animal Hospital.
(Editor's Note: Photos of the dog are too disturbing and graphic for publication.)