A former Razorback football player has pleaded guilty to aggravated animal cruelty after police said he abandoned two of his dogs, resulting in the death of one of them.
Jarrett Lake, 22, reached a plea deal with prosecutors where he pleaded guilty to the animal cruelty charge in exchange for probation, according to court documents.
Lake was sentenced to six years probation and was also ordered to receive psychiatric counseling from the Ozark Guidance Center. Lake must undergo the counseling by Aug. 1, court documents state.
The plea deal came after the suspect pleaded not guilty to a felony animal cruelty charge April 16. He was given a June 18 court date, which was waived after Lake then later pleaded guilty, according to the Washington County Prosecutor’s Office.
Lake was arrested in April after officers said they found his dogs abandoned at his old home. One of the dogs died.
Fayetteville Animal Control Officer Lawrence Kimble said he responded to Lake’s rented home on Jeremiah Place on Dec. 29 in reference to an abandoned animal call. Feces covered the floor, and the officer said he found a dead pit bull lying beside a baby stroller in the garage.
Animal Control determined Lake had moved out at least six days earlier.
Officers with the Fayetteville Police Department also found a pit bull inside that was “severely malnourished,” according to an arrest warrant affidavit. The dog received medical care from the Fayetteville Animal Shelter.
An examination of the dead pit bull revealed no food in the stomach, but rather a small piece of black plastic. The dog’s vertebrae, ribs and pelvic bones were visible through the skin, the affidavit states.
Police tried to contact Lake after finding the dogs, but he was out-of-state at a football camp, Lake’s aunt told officers. Lake called the officers back and told them the dogs were his responsibility, but he would surrender the animals to a shelter.
Based on the investigation, a warrant was then issued for Lake’s arrest, the affidavit states.
Lake played on the team from 2010 to 2013. Lake recorded 77 tackles in 2013 as a senior, tied for second most for the Razorbacks.