Dog Abuse Case Delayed

WINNSBORO (April 1, 2016) – An April 6 probable cause hearing for a Fairfield County man arrested Jan. 30 for a Dec. 13 dog dragging incident, has been continued until the first week in May, Assistant Solicitor Riley Maxwell of the Sixth Circuit Solicitor’s Fairfield County office told The Voice on Tuesday.

Robert Bruce, a Rock Hill attorney representing Billy Ray Huskey, 48, said the hearing was continued because Lt. Lee Haney, the Fairfield County Sheriff’s deputy investigating the incident, was not available for court on that date. Huskey was arrested on a felony charge of “Ill Treatment of Animals in general, torture.” Haney told The Voice in February that other charges could be brought against Huskey.

According to the arrest warrant, Huskey, who resides in Mitford, “did, while driving a white Dodge truck, drag from his vehicle a brown dog.” The warrant stated that Huskey then left the dog, with extensive injuries, in the woods near Carolina Adventure World off Camp Welfare Road at about noon on Dec. 13. At approximately 2:30 p.m., four women riding horses found the injured dog and brought him to Fairfield Animal Hospital in Winnsboro where he has since undergone multiple surgeries.

The women also reported three other dogs in poor condition at the site where they found the injured dog. The next day, Fairfield Animal Control picked up two of the dogs suffering from starvation and severe mange and brought them to the Fairfield Animal Hospital. One died at the hospital a few days later from its emaciated and diseased condition according to vet tech Susan Knight. The third dog was dead when Animal Control officials arrived on the scene, and a County official close to the investigation but who asked not to be named, said that dog appeared to have died from starvation and possibly disease. The surviving dog, a lab mix puppy, is now thriving under the hospital’s care, Knight said.

After the Hoof and Paw Benevolent Society posted a $1,500 reward in January for information leading to the conviction of the person(s) responsible for the dog’s injuries, witnesses came forward and Huskey was arrested the next day.

According to sources close to the investigation, Huskey told Fairfield County Sheriff’s deputies that the dragged dog was a stray that had come to his home, that he tried to feed it and it wouldn’t eat so he decided to take it to the ‘pound’ that Sunday morning, Dec. 13.

The Sheriff’s Office later told The Voice that Huskey admitted that all the abandoned dogs belonged to him. Neighbors told The Voice that the dogs, who Knight said appeared to all be under a year old, were likely the offspring of two or three older dogs that were still in Huskey’s custody. Sheriff’s Office officials said Huskey stated that the dogs were tied in the back of his pickup truck for the trip to the ‘pound’ and that he was not aware one had fallen out and was being dragged. At some point, a witness stopped Huskey from dragging the dog. Instead of proceeding to the ‘pound,’ Huskey did not seek veterinary care for the dragged dog and dumped all the dogs in the woods of Carolina Adventure World where they were later found, sources told The Voice.

After his arrest, Huskey was released the same day on a $5,000 surety bond.

 

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