Defendants in Chihuahua abuse case reject deal with jail time

Harold Campbell (left) and Jennifer Campbell sit in McCracken District Court on Thursday. The Campbells face dozens of animal abuse charges after more than 40 Chihuahuas, some dead, were discovered in their home last month.

DAVE THOMPSON | The Sun

Two McCracken residents accused of abusing dozens of Chihuahuas appeared in court Thursday and rejected a plea deal that would have required them to serve 45 days in jail each.

Father and daughter Harold Campbell and Jennifer Campbell are charged with 43 counts of second-degree cruelty to animals. They were charged last month after animal control officers found the dogs, some of which were dead, at a home in the county.

The living animals were taken to the McCracken County Humane Society.

Prosecutors offered the pair a deal that would have seen 42 of the charges dismissed, and a 12-month sentence on the remaining charge with all but 45 days suspended.

When McCracken District Judge Chris Hollowell asked if they wanted to accept the offer, the pair declined.

The agreement also would have called for the two to forfeit all the animals that were seized, and not own any other animals for two years.

The Campbells, who each face charges in other cases, applied to be represented by the public defender's office, which Hollowell granted.

Their next hearing in the animal abuse case was set for Nov. 21.

Law enforcement officials said Jennifer Campbell was in jail when she mentioned having some dogs that needed fed, but didn't give investigators permission to enter her home.

Officers applied for a search warrant, after which they found the dogs in conditions described as deplorable.

Some of the dogs had apparently eaten the dead dogs, and chewed off part of the feet of one dog that was still alive.

The humane society said a few of the dogs have since been adopted.

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