Starved dog case bound over to grand jury, defendant pleaded guilty to probation violation

Becky Campbell • Updated Oct 18, 2017 at 11:44 PM

A Kingsport woman charged with leaving her dog to starve to death when she moved from her Johnson City condo chose to send an animal cruelty charge against her to a grand jury.

Lindsey Price, 29, was charged in June after her former landlord found the rotted carcass of a dog officials believe she adopted from the Washington County/Johnson City Animal Shelter two years ago. The investigation began in late May after Price’s landlord at her Northridge condo found the long-rotted carcass of an adult black and brown dog.

Animal control officials said Price adopted a 12-week old puppy — named Sugar at the time, but renamed Luna after the adoption — in March 2015. Animal Shelter Co-Director Tammy Davis said she is certain the dog found inside a Northridge area condo in June is the same puppy.

Price was in Washington County General Sessions Court with her attorney, Scott Shults, on Wednesday for a hearing, but she decided to send the case to Criminal Court. She did, however plead guilty to a violation of probation — she was on probation for a DUI conviction at the time the animal cruelty charge was filed — and will serve 20 days in jail.

Shults told Judge Jim Nidiffer that Price did not admit any of the allegations in the underlying charge — the animal cruelty — by pleading guilty to the violation.

Price’s jail time begins Friday and she will serve the time on weekends, according to the plea agreement announced in court. Nidiffer warned Price to not be late reporting to jail, and to not call and say she can’t get there for any reason. Price was obviously pregnant, but there was no indication that will interfere with her serving the jail time.

Price will appear in Criminal Court early next year.