A man living without electricity or running water has been placed on probation for animal neglect after he was found sharing his home with several dogs and cats.
The man, Cody Swann, 24, told Special General Sessions Judge Larry Ross he did his best to provide food and water for the animals even though he was going without himself after his utilities were turned off two weeks ago at his Pinecrest apartment.
Swann had been in jail for three days after he was arrested on the animal neglect counts. His charges came when Swann’s landlord found a large number of cats and dogs which he assumed had been abandoned by past tenants.
When Public Works officials arrived on the scene, they found four dogs and six cats, plus a dead cat. It was at that point Swann approached them and revealed he had been living with the animals.
Police entered his home and made a video of the animal waste that was throughout the apartment. They also noted there was little food or water for the animals, all of which looked malnourished. Swann said he had been walking to another location and carrying water back for himself and the animals he was trying to care for. He noted the animals had all been abandoned and he was trying to help them despite his own circumstances.
Swann was released from jail Tuesday but warned he is to not have any animals in his possession during his six months on probation. Swann told the court he intends to try to live with relatives given his bad economic state.
In other court action heard by Judge Ross in Tuesday’s brief arraignment docket:
• Colin Cardwell, Jordan Pearce and Brandon Teel were all fined $10 plus costs for having alcohol in a state park.
• Donnie Jaco must serve five days and have his probation extended by half a year for violation of probation.
• Dakota West was jailed for contempt of court and was ordered to finish his 20 hours of public service work before he appears before the court again.