Former Mayor Jason Jackson has preliminary hearing on animal neglect case

Jackson's horse neglect case has...

EL CENTRO, Calif. - Former El Centro Mayor Jason Jackson was in Imperial County Superior Court on Tuesday for a preliminary hearing on the charge of one felony count of animal neglect.

Jackson’s defense attorney Ryan Childers said, “It’s a hearing for the judge to determine whether or not there is enough evidence that the case continue to trial.”

The felony count could carry up to three years in state prison.

“Mr. Jackson maintains that he did nothing wrong in this case,” Jackson said.

Four witnesses took the stand on Tuesday. One witness said she found Jackson’s 20 year-old horse near starvation. But an expert witness – a veterinarian - saw it differently.

“This horse was very thin but was not in danger of dying or of being seriously injured and that this could have been the result of unintentionally underfeeding a horse not ‘not feeding a horse' and those are very different things,” Childers said.

Tuesday’s hearing was only for the judge to determine whether or not there’s enough evidence to continue.

“There will be another arraignment and trial dates will be set. And we will engage in discovery and further examination of the facts and so forth getting ready for a trial,” Childers said.

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