NEBRASKA -- A Fort Calhoun man whose dog died after it was left out in subzero temperatures accepted a plea deal Tuesday in Washington County District Court.
Jason Franke, 42, pleaded no contest to an amended charge of intentional animal cruelty, a Class I misdemeanor. He could face up to a year in jail, a $1,000 fine and not be allowed to own an animal for up to five years.
"He could face up to a year in jail" -- THIS WILL NEVER HAPPEN. NO ONE IN NEBRASKA GOES TO JAIL FOR KILLING ANIMALS BY STARVING AND LEAVING THEM TO FREEZE TO DEATH
Judge John E. Samson ordered a presentence investigation. Sentencing is June 20.
Washington County sheriff's deputies were dispatched to a report of animal neglect on Jan. 5 at 9228 County Road 28.
A deputy found one dog deceased and another dog running around the property. The dog that died was described as a large dog with short, gray hair.
According to an affidavit for a search warrant, a concerned citizen that knew of the dogs had not seen Franke in some time. The person attempted to feed the dogs, but the large dog appeared to “act sickly.”
Temperatures on Jan. 4 and 5 were in the single digits with windchill factors below zero, according to Weather Underground.
Deputies did not find any food, water or shelter for the dogs on the property. One outbuilding had a hole in it large enough for the smaller dog to access to get out of the cold, but too small for the other dog to enter.
The deceased canine was transported to Rohrig Animal Hospital in Arlington for a necropsy.
According to the affidavit, the dog appeared to possibly be malnourished. The rib and hip bones were “predominantly visible.”
(Pilot Tribune & Enterprise - May 15, 2017)