Wife of Franklin County man who confessed to killing their dogs says she’s thankful he was denied bond

‘I feel like it was an aggression towards me and I think that if he would go that far then, I’m not safe either.’

ROCKY MOUNT, Va. – The Franklin County man who investigators say killed his own dogs and lied about them being stolen will continue to stay in jail until his hearing.

Terry Michel was denied bond for the second time on Tuesday after being denied bond last week and appeal the decision.

[READ MORE: Appeal bond denied for dog owner who confessed to killing his dogs in Franklin County]

The judge cited concerns that Michel could be a danger to himself and the community as well as concerns over his mental health struggles.

Michel is facing two counts of felony animal cruelty along with other charges.

Court records show after first telling the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office that his and his wife’s dogs, Caleb and Colby, were taken from a park; he later confessed to shooting and killing them and then dumping their remains on the side of the road.

Michel’s defense attorney, Aaron Houchens, asked for $25,000 secured bond saying Michel has no prior criminal history.

“Everything in this case points to an isolated incident. But beyond that, he has led an exemplary life. We hope the court considers that life rather than his worst day,” said Houchens.

Michel’s wife, Rhonda Michel, testified at Tuesday’s bond hearing and asked the judge to keep her husband in jail.

“It scares me that it actually got to the point where he would kill our dogs. I feel like it was an aggression towards me and I think that if he would go that far then I’m not safe either,” said Ms. Michel.

The court once again ruled in favor of Ms. Michel and the commonwealth, denying bond for Michel.

“I certainly understand the testimony of Ms. Michel of being very concerned about her safety,” said the judge.

The courtroom was filled with animal activists, like staff from the Franklin County Humane Society, who made orange ribbons for people in the gallery to wear.

Orange is the color that represents animal abuse awareness.

“It’s really affected the community and our staff and everyone around,” said Anita Scott, director of the Franklin County Humane Society.

Mr. Michel’s next court appearance is scheduled for May 4, 2023.

About the Author:

Sydney joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2021.