Defendant pleads not guilty to animal cruelty

John Richmeier
The Leavenworth Times

A Leavenworth man has pleaded not guilty to throwing a kennel with a dog in it into the the Missouri River.

Davion A. Simpson faces a felony charge of cruelty to animals.

He is accused of throwing a kennel that contained a miniature poodle into the river Aug. 2 at Riverfront Park. The dog was rescued by bystanders, according to Maj. Dan Nicodemus, deputy chief of the Leavenworth Police Department.

The poodle reportedly belonged to Simpson's girlfriend.

Simpson appeared Wednesday in Leavenworth County District Court for what had been scheduled as a preliminary hearing. But he waived his right to a preliminary hearing.

Simpson's attorney, James Floyd, asked to proceed to arraignment. Floyd said his client pleaded not guilty to the charge.

District Judge Gerald Kuckelman asked Floyd if he wished to set a trial date or schedule a status hearing. Floyd asked to have a status hearing in about three weeks.

Kuckelman scheduled the status hearing for Nov. 5.

Simpson is free on bond.

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