Former Baltimore Ravens Player Terrence Cody Indicted on Felony Dog Abuse Charges

MARCH 24, 2016 UPDATE: Terrence Cody was sentenced today to nine months in the Baltimore County Detention Center.

terrence cody nfl killed dogTerrence Cody, who was cut from the Baltimore Ravens last week while he was under investigation by the Baltimore County State’s attorney’s office for animal cruelty, was indicted today on 15 charges, including two felony charges for aggravated cruelty involving his dog.

These are the charges announced by the Baltimore County Police, according to the Baltimore Sun:

  • Two felony counts of aggravated animal cruelty related to the death of his dog, a Bullmastiff from Spain he bought for $8,000. If convicted, Cody faces a maximum of six years in prison and up to a $5,000 fine.
  • Five misdemeanor counts of animal abuse or neglect involving the same dog, punishable by up to 90 days in prison and at most a $5,000 fine.
  • One misdemeanor illegal possession of an alligator charge and five misdemeanor counts of animal abuse or neglect of the alligator. These charges are punishable by up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
  • The remaining misdemeanor charges are drug related.

Further information about the nature of the abuse wasn’t provided. According to Maryland law, aggravated animal cruelty is to “intentionally mutilate, torture, cruelly beat or cruelly kill an animal.”

John Cox, deputy state attorney for Baltimore County, told the Baltimore Sun that Cody was not involved in dog fighting.

Cody’s agent, Peter Schaffer, said last week that Cody’s Bullmastiff had died from worms. He said when the dog became seriously ill, Cody had taken him to a vet.

Schaffer was upset with the Ravens for canning his client. “This young man’s dog has died and the Ravens were so worried about possible ramifications from the league that they took a preemptive strike,” he told the Baltimore Sun. “The fact that the NFL has created such an atmosphere of hysteria that tramples on due process rights, the right of law and common decency is a tremendous problem in our league and our society.”

The “atmosphere of hysteria” is in reference to the NFL’s personal conduct policy, which was toughened up last year after the suspension of another Ravens team member, running back Ray Rice. In that domestic abuse case, an elevator camera captured Rice punching his fiancée in the face, knocking her unconscious. Rice later won his appeal of the suspension and it was overturned. Last week ESPN reported that the NFL Players Association had filed a grievance against the NFL to challenge the new personal conduct policy.

Schaffer insisted that Cody loved his dog. “If the dog was being treated cruelly, why take it to a vet?” he said, according to TribLIVE Sports. “When the dog passed away, Terrence was in tears.”

Cody has not yet been assigned a court date.

Photo via Twitter

Laura Goldman

I am a freelance writer and lifelong dog lover. For five years, I was a staff writer for i Love Dogs. When that site shut down, I started this blog...because I STILL Love Dogs!