Animal cruelty, or unfortunate circumstances? - FOX 13 News

Animal cruelty, or unfortunate circumstances?

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Tammy Brown sits in jail on the eve of her sentencing both heartbroken, and horrified.

A jury convicted her of animal cruelty, but she says she is only guilty of being broke.

When her dog "Harley" needed vet care, she couldn't afford it. He had a baseball size growth on his neck that would come and go over his 14 years.

She tried to treat him with skin ointments, "cause I loved him and I didn't want to see him in pain," she said.

But Brown lives on a fixed income of $508 a month, most of which goes to her mortgage and utilities.

She had a little bit left for food and medicine, and when Harley needed vet care, the money just wasn't there.

In 2011, Animal Services took him away, put him down, then charged Brown with animal cruelty.

A vet told her jury that Harley suffered from long-term neglect, and had a host of health problems.

Her attorney says Brown never intentionally harmed him.

But after sitting in jail for 36 days, she had time to think, and now regrets not seeking more help for Harley.

"I should have called, " she said as she broke down in tears.

Brown will be sentenced Friday afternoon. She could face up to five years in prison.

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