Las Vegas Sun

October 23, 2019

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Pet store owners plead innocent to Reno animal mistreatment

RENO — The owners of two pet stores in Reno and Sparks have pleaded not guilty to several charges of mistreating animals.

Lawyers for Michael Schneider and Leilani Tau-Schneider also filed a motion Wednesday seeking to dismiss the charges or reduce them from felonies to misdemeanors.

Both are accused of practicing veterinary medicine without a license. Tau-Schneider also faces one count of torturing and/or killing an animal.

The two own Puppies Plus on South Virginia Street in Reno and Puppy Love off Sparks Boulevard in Sparks.

Attorney Richard Cornell told the Reno Gazette Journal they deny that many of the alleged incidents ever occurred.

Tau-Schneider maintains the torture charge is based on hearsay from a former employee that cannot be submitted in court.

Washoe County District Attorney spokeswoman Michelle Bays says the state remains confident in its evidence against the two.