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Woman In Court To Face Animal Cruelty Charges

Last updated on Wednesday, January 23, 2013

(TERRE HAUTE) - Stacey Hopton appeared in court Tuesday.

Patsy Kelly of WTHI reports that in early December, a witness called police to complain Hopton had left animals without care for an extended period of time.

Now we do want to warn you, some of the details in this case may be disturbing.

The witness said Hopton had been out of town for a long period of time.

When she went to check on the animals at Hopton's house, she said she smelled a funny odor.

After walking into the house, the witness said she found one dead dog and another that looked like it was near death.

The witness said she took photos of the animals while she was inside.

A detective with the Terre Haute Police Department said when they got inside the house, there was smells of decaying flesh, animal feces and urine.

He also said there was broken glass on the floor.

Officers say there was no food, water or heat inside the house for the animals.

Officers found one dead dog inside the house. They also found a pitbull that had eyes matted shut and was severely underweight.

The veterinarian said the dog's stomach had glass, metal and wood chips in it. He died the next day.

Officers say the other animals appeared severely malnourished.

Detective Rick Decker said this is the most severe case he's worked.

"From the pictures I saw, and the officer's report, the conditions of the home were deplorable," said Detective Decker.

Hopton faces two counts of Torturing or Mutilating an Animal and four counts of Cruelty to an Animal.

Hopton's trial is set for July.

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