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Owen County Man Pleads Guilty To Animal Cruelty
Updated August 10, 2016 7:01 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(OWEN CO. ) - Paul E. Purcell Jr. pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge and an infraction for hoarding 80 malnourished dogs and attracting thousands of rats to his home.

He was sentence to 365 days in jail followed by no probation, according to Owen County Circuit Court records.

He has already served 25 days at the Owen County Jail. With good-time credit earned, Purcell has 315 days left in his sentence.

Purcell was arrested after police officers and volunteers seizing the dogs from his property near Freedom at 3470 Shepard Road in May and culminated with the razing and clearing of the house, outbuildings and abandoned vehicles on the site. Citing public health hazards, the county called an exterminator to rid the property of the tens of thousands of rats.

Paul Purcell's older sister, Vikki Purcell, is also facing the same charges. She had pleaded not guilty to the crime. Her next court hearing is scheduled for September 8 and September 29, followed for a bench trail scheduled on October 4.

The Purcells have have agreed not to own any more dogs and will be held accountable for the cost of cleaning up their property.

Many of the dogs seized are recovering and becoming socialized in area animal shelters or animal rescue facilities. Officials say, some of the dogs have found new homes.

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