The Baltimore Ravens parted ways with Terrence Cody on Monday, the same day the defensive tackle was indicted on animal cruelty charges, some of which stemmed from the death of his dog and possession of an alligator, according to prosecutors and online court records.
Cody also was indicted on counts of possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Overall, he faces 15 counts, including two of aggravated animal cruelty (a felony) and 10 of animal cruelty.
According to the Baltimore Sun, the Ravens announced their intention to release Cody on Jan. 23 but were unable to terminate his contract until Monday. Baltimore County police confirmed shortly after the team's initial announcement that Cody was being investigated for animal cruelty.
The two felony charges stem from the death of Cody's bull mastiff, which occurred at at a veterinarian's office on Jan. 19. The cause of the dog's death is unclear.
Peter Schaffer, Cody’s agent, says the charges are ludicrous.
“This is all a result of the NFL allowing players to be convicted before they’re tried,” Schaffer told the Sun. “If Terrence wasn’t a public figure, they wouldn’t have ever charged him. It’s just ridiculous.
“If he was treating the dog so poorly, why would he take it to the veterinarian? They are trying to say he wanted the dog dead, which makes no sense because he loved the dog.”
Schaffer added that Cody still has two dogs at his home.
“If [police] were so worried that he mistreated the dog that died, why did they leave two others in his house?” Schaffer said.
Schaffer stressed that Cody is an animal lover, which might explain why the Ravens' 2010 second-round pick had an alligator in his possession. Unfortunately for Cody, it's illegal to import alligators into Maryland.
Cody has been released on $10,000 bail. His arraignment hadn’t been scheduled as of late Monday afternoon.
If convicted of the felony charges, Cody could face a maximum of three years in prison per charge and a $5,000 fine.