Jail time after dog dies
By Staff Reports
May 23, 2014, 13:07
COLONIAL HEIGHTS — A Colonial Heights man will serve one month in jail for causing the death of a dog in 2013 after failing to provide it with sufficient nourishment.
Christopher Forehand pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of animal cruelty in Colonial Heights Circuit Court on May 5.
Forehand was originally charged with a rare felony animal cruelty charge, however a plea agreement amended the charge to a misdemeanor under the conditions that he serve one month in jail, serve 200 hours of community service for Colonial Heights Animal Control, pay $150 in restitution and lose the ability to own a companion animal at any point in the future.
As part of the plea agreement, Judge Herbert C. Gill sentenced Forehand to 12 months in prison, with 11 months suspended.
The offense occurred on or around a period of time between May 15 and July 4 of 2013.
Animal Control recovered the carcass of a dog from Forehand’s residence, where the dog was found in a room that did not have food or water in it and had demonstrated signs of decomposition by the time the body was found, according to the commonwealth.
Forehand had not been living at the residence at the time the carcass was found.
The dog was 10 years old, and had been acquired from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and died of starvation, the commonwealth stated.
John Kirkland, Forehand’s attorney, stated that Forehand loved the dog, but had moved it from his mother’s house to another location because she was allergic, and was not sure how the door closed to the room the dog was in because the last time he left the home, the door was kept open. Kirkland said that Forehand was “clearly remorseful” for his actions.