Bond was set at $25,000 for David Neanover, 36, of Reily Twp., who was charged with felony animal abuse. After Butler County Judge Robert Lyons announced the bond, several people in the courtroom applauded. RICK McCRABB/STAFF

Butler County man whose animal cruelty case has caused protests to appear next week

David Neanover, 36, of Reily Twp., was originally charged with felony animal cruelty, but last week a Butler County grand jury declined to indict on the fifth-degree felony and sent the case back to county Area I Court for litigation on three misdemeanor charges: two counts of cruelty to companion animals, one a first-degree misdemeanor and the other a second-degree misdemeanor. He is also charged with failure to register a dog, which is a minor misdemeanor.

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If found guilty of the first-degree misdemeanor, Neanover could be sentenced to up to 180 days in the county jail.

Neanover is scheduled to be arraigned on the lower charges June 27 in Area I Court in Oxford.

The case has caused protests during Neanover’s court appearances by those outraged about what happened to the dog, Lucifer, who become known as “Lou.”

Butler County Sheriff’s Office dog wardens responded to 6165 Main St. in April and found the dog, according to Sheriff Richard Jones.

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The dog was cared for and hospitalized for five days at Animal Care Centers. The dog died several days later.

The medical staff was surprised when X-rays showed rocks in the dog’s stomach. He lived his life on a very short chain and was “deprived food for quite some time,” a social media post by the animal shelter read.

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