Man, woman face 12 counts of cruelty to animals

LISBON – Two Darner Road residents are facing 12 counts of cruelty to animals after deputies and a humane agent reportedly found dead and malnourished animals on their property on April 22.

A May 15 pretrial hearing was set in Columbiana County Municipal Court on Monday for Matthew Devereaux, 23, and Jennifer Grimmett, 29, each charged with 12 counts of cruelty to animals.

Court documents accuse them of keeping several starving dogs inside a home and other dogs in a room in crates with urine- and feces-covered rags, molded food ground into the floor and no water.

Additionally, it was found there were several horses malnourished and filthy in stalls without water in a barn on the property. According to the affidavit, Deputy Jon Price described the horses as being able to “see their bones through their skin.”

After speaking to multiple witnesses, Price reportedly learned several horses which may have died of neglect and abuse were buried on the property. One witness reportedly told Price that Grimmett had fed the horses food which had gasoline spilled on it, causing one horse to subsequently die.

After obtaining a search warrant, deputies reportedly found nine horses, one pony, five miniature ponies and a draft horse on the property. After being examined by Dr. Doug Wiley of Lisbon Veterinary Services, four of the horses were determined to be extremely emaciated and three were found emaciated.

Additionally, two chickens, a duck, three alpacas, two sheep, a goat, six dogs, one cat and two rabbits were found on the property. Some of those animals were examined with the help of Dr. Eric Brooks of Stow Kent Animal Hospital and Dr. Randall Alger of the Alger Veterinary Clinic. Some of those animals were found to be underweight, some were kept without water and some had illnesses or injuries.

Deputies had initially responded to the home after a domestic situation was reported there. At that point, the issues with some of the animals were discovered when deputies went inside the home.