The man accused of leaving more than 20 animals to die in a Columbia townhouse, who took responsibility for their deaths in his wife's trial, filed a plea of insanity in circuit court earlier this month.
Brady Decker, 39, of the 9400 block of Hundred Drums Row in Columbia, was scheduled to begin a criminal jury trial on Feb. 13 for his role in the animals' deaths, but that trial was pushed back after the insanity plea was filed and Decker's lawyer asked for more time, according to documents filed in Howard County Circuit Court. The trial is now scheduled to begin April 23.
The court has ordered that Decker be examined by a doctor from the Department of Mental Health and Hygiene.
Decker was charged with 72 counts of animal cruelty and 21 counts of mutilation after police found 40 animals dead inside a Columbia townhouse on Lambeth Court leased by Decker and his wife Elizabeth Lindenau in January of 2012.
Police orignally pursued Lindenau as the primary suspect in the case, because at the time she was running a small bird rescue organization. But Lindenau was found not guilty in the animals' deaths in a trial in the fall of 2012.
At the trial, Lindenau maintained she had moved out of the townhouse in April of 2011 and had only returned once, in August of 2011. Between April 2011 and January of 2012, Decker testified he was taking care of the animals.
Neither Decker nor Lindenau lived in the townhouse after Nov. 2011, and the only time Decker would stop by was to feed the animals, according to testimony. Lindenau testified the couple was using the townhouse to store the animals until they had finished moving into her parents' house on Hundred Drums Row.
During that time, she testified she was also storing more than 30 birds in a friends' basement that she had acquired through the Bailey Foundation, which she described as a bird rescue organizations she ran.
Decker testified that he stopped taking care of the animals one day in mid-December 2011 after one of his beloved cockatoos died. By then the power and water had been cut off at the house, as the couple struggled with bills, according to Decker's testimony. He testified that he never returned to the townhouse after that day.
"At the point that I found [the cockatoo dead] I completely lost it," testified Decker during his wife's trial.
When police entered the home in January 2012, they found four live animals in poor condition and 40 dead animals, 19 dead in the freezer and 21 dead in cages and other areas around the home.
Lindenau testified that the night police found the animals Decker told her over the phone that the animals had died. She said he told her he was going to drive his car off a bridge or into something and Lindenau drove around Columbia for 45 minutes until she found him.
After that, she testified that she took him to the hospital and committed him to the behavioral/ psychiatric unit where he stayed for seven days.
Decker is being represented by the same lawyer who represented his wife, Jonathan Scott Smith.
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