Phoenix-area pet boarders plead not guilty in dog deaths

Oct 29, 2014, 12:46 PM | Updated: 12:46 pm

PHOENIX — The owners of a suburban Phoenix dog care facility, where nearly two dozen pets died, pleaded not guilty to animal cruelty charges Wednesday.

Todd and MaLeisa Hughes owned Green Acre Dog Boarding in Gilbert, where 23 dogs died while in their care in June. The couple said the dogs had died of heat exhaustion, after one of the animals bit through the power cord of the air conditioner.

An investigation in July by the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said there was no evidence that a chewed-up electrical wire had cut power to a cooling unit.

Two others, Austin Flake and his wife Logan, were also charged with felony counts of animal cruelty. The Flakes were responsible for the animals while the Hughes were out of town for the weekend. The four were indicted two weeks ago.

Shannon Gillette, whose two dogs died at the facility, was outside the courtroom before Wednesday’s proceedings.

“I try not not hold a lot of anger … (but) we miss our dogs so much. And they died in such a horrible way, we just want to see justice and the people that are responsible for our dogs’ death held accountable,” she said.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Murad Dervish (University of Arizona Police Department Photo)...

Suspect arrested in fatal shooting of professor at University of Arizona

A University of Arizona professor was fatally shot at the Tucson campus Wednesday, and police said a former student was taken into custody.
10 hours ago
(Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...

Woman dies after vehicle runs into concrete barrier on Phoenix freeway ramp

A woman was killed early Thursday when her vehicle hit a concrete barrier on a Phoenix freeway ramp, authorities said.
10 hours ago
(Screenshot via ADOT Webcam)...

Rollover truck crash shuts down Loop 303 near I-17 in Peoria

A big rig rollover shut down part of a West Valley freeway during Thursday morning rush hour, state transportation officials said.
10 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Northern Arizona University)...
Griselda Zetino

NAU, community colleges partner to launch Arizona Attainment Alliance

NAU is partnering with all 10 community college districts across the state to meet what they view as one of the biggest challenges in Arizona: low college-attendance rates and attainment.
10 hours ago
(File Photo by Courtney Pedroza/Getty Images)...
Kevin Stone

Prop 132 would require 60% supermajority to pass Arizona ballot measures that add tax

Prop 132 asks voters if ballot measures that enact a tax should require a supermajority of at least 60% to pass instead of the current 50% threshold.
10 hours ago
(Flickr Photo/Arizona Department of Transportation)...

Westbound I-10 to close overnight Thursday in central Phoenix

A stretch of Interstate 10 in central Phoenix will be closed overnight Thursday for roadwork, state transportation officials said.
10 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
Dr. Richard Carmona

Great news: Children under 5 can now get COVID-19 vaccine

After more than two years of battle with an invisible killer, we can now vaccinate the youngest among us against COVID-19. This is great news.
Phoenix-area pet boarders plead not guilty in dog deaths