Vicious Dog Owners Fined In Justice Court
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WATER VALLEY – The owners of 11 dogs on County Road 224 that were deemed vicious in accordance with the county’s vicious dog ordinance were fined $463.75 in justice court Tuesday morning. Sam Goodwin and Phyllis Goodwin were each cited with violating the county’s ordinance in November after their dogs attacked and killed a neighbor’s dog.
The case was set for trial Tuesday and almost a dozen witnesses were in the courtroom to testify on the matter. The Goodwins entered a plea of no contest, foregoing the trial. Pleading no contest is not an admission of guilt, but an admission to the facts in the complaint. They were represented by attorney Bradley Peeples.
The sheriff’s department seized five of the dogs after the incident in November and briefly impounded them. The dogs were released back to the owners following the construction of an enclosure to contain them.
Justice Court Judge Janet Caulder presided over the case and also gave the defendants until Friday to build a secondary fence around the primary enclosure to contain three of the dogs that can not be housed with the other eight dogs. The judge also warned the Goodwins that a conviction for a second offense carries a minimum of 15 days in jail, up to 30 days, plus a fine.
“It is very important that you make sure those dogs do not get out,” she stated during the proceeding.
The county’s ordinance also states that penalties for second and third offenses also includes the removal of the dog or dogs from the jurisdiction of Yalobusha County.