LEXINGTON, Ky. -- A McCracken County woman has been charged with cruelty to animals after allegedly dragging a dog on a leash behind her car, according to Paducah police.
Multiple people called 911 about 5 p.m. Monday about the incident, which occurred in the area of Paducah Tilghman High School, police said. Witnesses observed the woman driving down Kentucky Avenue in a light blue passenger car before pulling into the parking lot of a fast-food restaurant with the dog still tied behind the car, according to police.
Paducah officers found the woman, later identified as 60-year-old Jennifer Morris, out of her vehicle arguing with bystanders, police said. Witnesses told an officer that Morris got out of her car, dragged the dog from the parking lot to a nearby sign and tried to tie the leash to it, according to Paducah police.
Morris told police that she had been arguing with a passenger in her car and he got out of the vehicle followed by the dog. The woman told officers she thought the dog was clear of the vehicle, police said.
Multiple people allegedly tried to stop Morris while she was driving but were unsuccessful. Police said Morris was belligerent and refused to calm down when confronted by officers.
In addition to second-degree cruelty to animals charge, Morris was charged with second-degree disorderly conduct. She was placed in the McCracken County jail.
Police said the dog suffered "obvious, serious injuries" and it was taken to a local veterinarian for treatment.
Morris has previously been convicted of harboring a vicious animal. According to court records, police responded to her home in 2017 for reports of an overdose. Morris opened the door and a dog ran out in an aggressive manner toward an officer, according to an arrest citation.
During the 2017 incident, the officer fired his gun and "put the dog down," according to the arrest citation. Morris said the dog had previously bitten people, including police and had previously been taken away by animal control, police said.
Morris also has criminal mischief and criminal trespassing convictions from a 2016 arrest, along with arson and wanton endangerment convictions two years prior.
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