Cops and animals ...what could possibly go wrong?
Hearing postponed for Montville Township officer charged in police dog's death
By Evan MacDonald, Northeast Ohio Media Group
Montville Township police dog Beny died Sept. 28 after being left inside a police cruiser.Courtesy Montville Township police
MEDINA, Ohio -- A pretrial hearing for a Montville Township officer whose police dog died after being left for hours in a police cruiser has been postponed a fourth time.
Sgt. Brett Harrison is charged in Medina Municipal Court with two counts of companion animal cruelty, both second-degree misdemeanors. He pleaded not guilty Oct. 29.
Harrison is charged in connection with the death of K-9 Beny, who died Sept. 28 after being left in a police cruiser for more than four hours. Beny died as a result of injuries consistent with heat stroke, police said.
Prosecutor Jeff Holland filed a motion to continue a pretrial hearing scheduled Monday because he was due in court in a separate case, an employee at his Sharon Center office said.
Judge Dale M. Chase granted the motion Friday. A new court date has not been scheduled, according to court records.
Harrison's court dates have been postponed three times since arraignment. He was originally scheduled to stand trial Dec. 10.
A Medina County SPCA agent gathered evidence in the case by interviewing Montville Township officers, reviewing security footage and inspecting Harrison's police cruiser. Holland reviewed that evidence and recommended charges be filed.
Montville Township officials disciplined Harrison by suspending him two weeks without pay for violating department policy and procedures. Forty vacation hours were also taken from him.
Harrison apologized to Montville Township trustees, residents, the police department, his colleagues and Beny in a statement released Oct. 7.