Two Northeast Alabama men charged with animal cruelty

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COLLINSVILLE, Ala. (AP) – Two northeast Alabama men are charged with animal cruelty after police say more than two dozen dead or malnourished dogs were discovered.

William Allen Stewart, 68, and Major Lavaughn Ford, 51, are each charged with 19 misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals, Collinsville police said.

Police found 22 malnourished dogs and the remains of five others at a house last week, The Gadsden Times reported. Officers were investigating a complaint about a foul odor from the property.

Some of dead dogs were only skeletal remains, said Collinsville Assistant Police Chief Rex Leath.

Eighteen of the dogs had to be euthanized.

The dogs included beagles and hounds, Leath said. They had been kept in a wooded area in five pens, and some were on chains tied to stakes, he said.

Police say neither man lived at the home, but each owned some of the animals.

Stewart and Ford are both free on bond. Court records aren’t yet available to show whether either man has an attorney.

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Information from: The Gadsden Times, http://www.gadsdentimes.com

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