A Couch Street couple faces felony charges for allegedly allowing their dog to starve to death while tied next to its dog house.
The suspects, Brandon Kester and Judith Kester, will face preliminary hearing March 18 before General Sessions Judge Bill Locke on the charge of aggravated cruelty to animals.
The charge comes after police were alerted to an animal abuse case. When McMinnville Animal Control officer David Denton arrived, he found a female pitbull deceased inside its dog house.
“The condition of the dog was such that it appeared starved with its ribs exposed,” Denton said. “The dog was unable to exit its dog house and was lying in its own feces.”
Denton noted the dog was chained to a post next to its dog house by its neck.
“Due to the dog’s condition it was unable to get to either food or water,” Denton added.
The dog was taken to a veterinarian for examination. It was there it was determined the dog weighed only 35 pounds. Denton said that is about half what the dog should weigh.
The crime for which the couple is charged is a Class E Felony which carries one to two years in prison. By definition, the law states a person is guilty of the crime by exhibiting conduct that is carried out in a depraved and sadistic manner and which tortures or maims the animal, including the failure to provide food and water to a companion animal resulting in substantial risk of death or death.