Court appointed attorney John Oshoway pled before Judge Thomas Evans that Eric Arnold be spared additional punishment in one of the state's high-profile animal cruelty cases.

Arnold had been convicted of 12 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty. The court sentenced the former Roane resident to 60 days in jail and fined him $1,200.

Oshoway told the court that Arnold did not intend to be cruel to the animals, and was currently a caretaker for his wife Kathy who is mentally disabled. Both Arnold and his wife have law degrees.

The attorney told the court the couple have lost everything and are currently living in Staunton, Virginia. A hearing on Kathy Arnold's ability to stand trial is scheduled for April 8.

Judge Thomas Evans III said "It's arrogance, blind and inexcusable behavior."

Evans had denied Oshoway's request to declare a mistrial.

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