In a Multnomah County, Oregon Circuit Court case, an attorney subpoenaed four witnesses named Merlin, Patches, Coco and Raven to aid in the defense of his clients.
The witnesses called were three Great Danes and one pit bull.
According to an Associated Press report on NorthJersey.com, the dogs appeared at the animal neglect trial of owners, Wayne Martin and Layne Woods, who were accused of failing to provide adequate veterinary care for the dogs. Defense attorney Chris O'Connor hoped to prove that the dogs were in good shape with their appearance.
UPI.com reports that the dogs had been taken by authorities on May 12, after a severely ill 12-year old Shar-Pei had been given to authorities. The dog later had to be euthanized. Witnesses from the Oregon Humane Society said the four dogs were all badly infested with fleas and one Great Dane had deep wounds on its leg. The Shar-Pei was said to have a pus-filled mass on her head.
The Oregonian reports the jury found Martin and Woods guilty of the first-degree animal neglect, which carries a sentence of up to a year in jail, and a $6,250 fine. The two are not permitted to own domestic animals for five years.
The witnesses appeared before the jury for about five minutes before leaving. Testimony was limited to drinking water and some slobbering, but the witnesses were well-behaved. Judge John Wittmayer, related a story from over 30 years ago where a dog was subpoenaed that belonged to a man accused of robbing a store because a witness only remembered the dog.