LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Things just got a lot more serious for a prominent local dog trainer accused of killing a family's Golden Retriever.
13 Chief Investigator Darcy Spears first reported on Ricky Allen Davis last month.
Now, at least 12 members of the grand jury have voted to indict Davis for felony animal cruelty in the death of a Golden Retriever named Woody.
The dog's family has been without him for nearly a year. Now, they've got a good chance for justice.
Wendy Span can't say her dog's name without a smile.
But it's a smile against a backdrop of sadness.
"We were devastated," Span said about when she first learned Woody had died. "I can't even tell you the feelings."
Devastated to learn their beloved 9-year-old pet had died while in the care of Ricky Allen Davis, a trainer who'd come highly recommended and who was boarding the Spans' two dogs while they were out of town for a funeral.
When they hired Davis, they were unaware that he didn't have an animal handler's permit and wasn't even licensed to do business.
"I didn't believe what had happened and I called animal control just because I didn't think it was right. There was something wrong. My dog was perfectly healthy one minute and dead the next minute," Span said.
Authorities agreed that something wasn't right and charged Davis with felony cruelty in Woody's death.
The indictment pushes that charge forward, accusing Davis of killing the dog "By failing to provide adequate water or conditions necessary to prevent (him) from overheating and/or suffering from heat stroke."
Woody died on August 6, 2018 after being driven around for hours in Davis' van with four other dogs.
When Davis got Woody to the vet, the dog was already dead and in rigor mortis with a body temperature so high it was literally off the charts--more than 107 degrees.
Davis' attorney denies any wrongdoing by his client. He previously said that Davis believes Woody became stressed because he was away from his owners and that his body just shut down.
Davis must answer the charge in court on June 26.