Judge still won’t lower bonds in animal cruelty case

Couple still a flight risk, he says

By Lindsey Erdody Published:

William and Sandra Coy, the St. Johns Road couple facing 23 counts of second-degree animal cruelty, appeared in Franklin District Court Tuesday to try again to have their bonds lowered.

William Coy, 48, and his wife Sandra Coy, 55, pleaded not guilty Aug. 20 after 23 animals were taken from their property.

During their last court appearance Aug. 29, they tried to have lower bonds set.

Franklin District Judge Chris Olds determined at that time they were a danger to society and a flight risk, so he kept the bonds at $46,000.

On Tuesday, William Coy’s attorney Sheila Kurtz, whom Sandra Coy dismissed as her representation, argued that William Coy isn’t a flight risk. He has been in jail for 49 days, which isn’t fair, she said.

“He is entitled to be presumed innocent,” she said.

Franklin County Attorney Rick Sparks said he did not oppose lowering the bond to 10 percent of $10,000, but only if William Coy agreed to release his claim on the animals so they could be adopted.

But with only half ownership of the animals, Kurtz said William Coy was unable to do that.

Olds said he thought about the bond issue after the last court date and still believes it needs to stay at $46,000.

The other issue addressed was how long it’s taking the county attorney to prepare for the case. Kurtz argued Sparks is taking too long.

Sparks said he has to be thorough and get information for each individual animal, which is why it’s taking longer.

“I’m going to try to get everything I can to them (the defense attorneys),” Sparks said after court. “It’s not just a simple case.”

Olds pushed the cases to Oct. 23, but said he wants information to be provided as quickly as possible and to get a trial date set as soon as possible.

However, a trial date can’t be set until Sandra Coy has representation. Kurtz told the court that Sandra Coy dismissed her from the case.

Officials initially seized 23 animals on Aug. 17 from the Coys’ property on St. Johns Road. The following Tuesday, they rescued nine dogs and one horse. Dozens of other animals, including llamas, pigs, goats and pit bulls were also removed.

The Franklin County Humane Society took the dogs that were seized and relocated the other animals to various undisclosed locations.

Sparks said more than $8,600 has been spent caring for these animals since the Coys were arrested.

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  • Good going, Judge. If they flee, they'll just go to another state and do the same thing.

  • If the Coys had a good attorney, surely they'd encourage their clients to relinquish ownership of all the seized animals immediately. Or aren't the Coys able to understand their escalating indebtedness due to their neglect of these animals. I don't think the county - or the humane society - may ever collect the boarding costs for the seized Coy animals. And that has a negative affect on ALL the unfortunate animals in our community that can't be served at the shelter because of the Coys' animals, which can't be adopted out until ownership is relinquished voluntarily or by court order. The situation is just wrong all around!