Vian man pleads not guilty to animal cruelty

SALLISAW, Okla. (AP) -- A Vian man accused of severely injuring a horse has pleaded not guilty to animal cruelty.

Rueben Ray Houston entered the plea Monday in Sequoyah County District Court. Houston is due in court again on March 19.

Prosecutors charged Houston with felony animal cruelty, misdemeanor trespass and misdemeanor malicious injury to property. He was arrested after an officer discovered a young horse tied to a tree.

A veterinarian testified that the animal was thin, malnourished and severely injured. The veterinarian said the horse's injuries were consistent with being dragged. The horse was eventually euthanized.

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