Hearing set to finalize custody of Tuscaloosa K9 Training Academy dogs
Source: Josh Gauntt/WBRC
The pens outside were overgrown. Source: Josh Gauntt/WBRC
Inside the house, reporter Josh Gauntt found numerous crates occupied by dogs. Source: Josh Gauntt/WBRC
These four people have been arrested on drug and animal cruelty charges. Source: Fayette Co. Sheriff
FAYETTE COUNTY, AL (WBRC) -
A hearing has been set to determine the fate of dozens of animals left behind after a raid.
The Tuscaloosa K9 Training Academy in Berry was raided last week and the owner, trainer and two others were arrested on drug charges. Soon after, all four were charged with animal cruelty.
The owner, Heather Litz, has since bonded out of the Fayette County Jail. The 24th Judicial Task Force, who completed the investigation of the academy, has asked Litz to turn over the remaining animals.
She has refused and a court hearing has been set for Nov. 12 to determine who will gain custody of the dogs.
Authorities found over 120 animals living at the camp and took 20 of them away to be cared for by a veterinarian.
Authorities told FOX6 News that they discovered two dead dogs in a freezer while serving warrants at the academy. When FOX6 visited, we found dog crates stacked inside a house on the property and outdoor pens overgrown with grasses.
The 20 dogs originally taken to the vet remain with the veterinarian. The remaining 100 are still at the academy and are being cared for by the Fayette County Sheriff's Office and the academy staff. Some of those 100 belong to Litz and others are owned by outside people.
If your dog is still at the academy, the Fayette County Sheriff's Office invites you to contact them at 205-932-3205 and provide proper paperwork to prove ownership.