TARRANT COUNTY (CBSNewsTexas.com) - A dog trainer is facing felony animal cruelty charges after three families came forward this summer saying their dogs died while in his care.
A grand jury indicted Alan Brown, who runs a dog training business called K-9 Direction, on a total of six charges including tampering with evidence.
The, all told CBS Texas similar stories last month of boarding their dogs with Brown while on vacation, only to return and be told their dogs had died.
Theincludes a long list of possible ways the dogs died, including that they may have been poisoned, exposed to unsafe temperatures, did not have adequate food or water, or were overworked.
The indictment describes the tampering charge slightly differently in the case of each dog. However, in each case it references Brown knowing there may be an investigation into the deaths, and failing to preserve the bodies or delaying getting them to a professional knowing it would impair the evidence.
The Tarrant County District Attorney's office handled the investigation according to court documents and took the evidence directly to a grand jury. Asked about the decision to pursue the case, a spokesperson said the office does not comment on pending cases.
The animal services department in Arlington looked into the complaints from at least two families, but a spokesperson said they didn't find evidence of any violation outside of two citations for Brown operating a business out of his home. The city confirmed it is still monitoring that business activity.
Brown's attorney, James Luster, wrote that he looks forward to helping investigators understand the situation, and set the record straight.
"Alan Brown loves animals and has devoted decades to helping owners better care for their dogs," he said. "Our hearts go out to those who are grieving the loss of a beloved pet."
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