City gets temporary custody of puppies

Published 10:33 am Tuesday, July 17, 2012

FRANKLIN—A judge on Monday granted the city temporary custody of two puppies seized from a Franklin man for allegedly selling them from the trunk of a car when the heat index hit 110 degrees.

The puppies could be returned to Carl Basnight, 26, of 376 N. College Drive, Apt. C, pending the outcome of his 9 a.m. Monday, July 30, hearing in Franklin General District Court. Basnight is charged with three counts of selling dogs before seven weeks of age and three counts of failing to provide proper care of animals. All are misdemeanors.

Police said Basnight had no food or water for three, five-week-old Shih Tzu pups he was selling in the parking lot between Walmart and Arby’s on July 5; police took the dogs to a veterinarian, where one died. The remaining two were turned over to the city animal shelter.

As of Monday, more than 50 had called to adopt the now seven-week-old pups, said Animal Control Officer Roy Richards.

The city filed for temporary custody after Basnight called the shelter asking for the dogs, Richards said. He told Franklin District Court Judge W. Parker Councill that Basnight was notified about Monday’s hearing. Basnight did not appear in court.

“If you get the city attorney to come up with an order, I’ll sign it,” Parker told Richards.

The puppies’ future depends on the outcome of the July 30 hearing.

“They could be returned to him (Basnight), or us for permanent custody,” Richards said.

If the city gets permanent custody, the plan is to let the dogs be adopted, he said. The new owner would have to pay a $10 adoption fee per dog and agree to spay or neuter the animals.