When a person is accused of committing a crime, he or she may have a long legal case ahead. Though an arrest does not necessarily mean that formal charges will result, the accused will need to take his or her case seriously if formally charged. Typically, one of the first steps that a person will want to take in such a situation is to understand the charges and criminal defense options.

One woman in New Jersey is likely taking such steps after recently being taken into custody. Reports stated that a deceased puppy was found in a weighted cage that was submerged in a pond. It was unclear how the puppy was found, but a necropsy was performed as part of an investigation into the animal’s death.

Details regarding the investigation were not given in the report, but it was noted that the apparent evidence resulted in the 47-year-old woman being taken into custody. She is currently facing two counts of third-degree animal cruelty as well as a charge for defiant trespass. It was noted that she had been released from custody at the time of the report and had a scheduled court date later this month.

Animal cruelty charges can range in severity, so it is important that this New Jersey woman fully understand her predicament. She may find it useful to request the information the prosecution allegedly has against her and to review such related information thoroughly as she works on her criminal defense presentation. It is also important to remember that she is presumed innocent until — and only if — proven guilty in a court of law.