A puppy who was left emaciated and without a wagging chance late last year inside a storage unit is now a healthy, happy dog.
The former owner of the pit bull has pleaded not guilty and reasserted that plea Tuesday afternoon in court, on National Dog Day.
Another court date has been scheduled for November 18 for more evidentiary discovery, and a jury trial will begin on January 26, 2015, according to the Caddo Clerk of Court's office.
"We are pleased with this date," Braveheart's owners wrote on the Facebook page, "A Voice for Braveheart." "Not that it is taking so long to get justice for Braveheart, but we feel a trial by jury is a good thing.
Gabriel Sinclair Lee, 31, has plead not guilty to felony aggravated cruelty. His trial date was set for Aug. 26.
Lee's emaciated, malnourished pit bull, later named Braveheart by his rescuers, was discovered chained in a metal storage unit on Youree Drive last year.
When police made the initial report of Braveheart's discovery last September, Caddo Parish Animal Services did not begin investigating the alleged abuse until after learning about it from a local reporter in October.
That's when the dog was taken from his foster family, Bo and Ronda Spataro, creating an uproar among those who felt the dog should be allowed to recover at their home, rather than the sterile confinement of the animal shelter.
A protest was planned and a petition was circulated, gathering more than 10,000 signatures in just over 24 hours before it was shut down with word of Braveheart's release to a local vet.
Braveheart was crowned Grand Marshal of the Krewe of Barkus & Meoux Mardi Gras parade for 2015.