Man accused of animal cruelty appears in court

LISBON – The Leetonia man accused of animal cruelty after two pet ducks died, made a brief appearance in Columbiana County Municipal Court on Tuesday.

Jose D.E. Ramos IV, 21, Columbia Street, Leetonia, appeared with his attorney, Walter Newton, for a pretrial hearing. Ramos was not required to speak during the hearing.

The charge was filed by Columbiana police after it was reported at noon April 30 someone in the pickup purposely drove over the two ducks in the drive-though lane of McDonald’s. The ducks belonged to Don Snyder, who lives next door to the fast food restaurant. One duck reportedly died immediately and the other died later due to its injuries.

In court Tuesday, Assistant County Prosecutor Don Humphrey Jr. said the case has not been resolved. He had provided Newton with requested evidence. He explained a witness statement that Newton sought, which had been thought to be a written statement, was only an oral interview with police.

The attorneys requested a motion hearing, which could also be used as an additional pretrial. The hearing was set for 1 p.m. Aug. 13.

Newton noted he has discussed with his client whether or not he wants a jury trial and plans to make the decision by the next hearing.

Ramos was charged the next day.