Update: New Animal Cruelty Charge Filed in Drunk Driving Case
A Grand Island man accused of driving drunk with 100 chickens as passengers is now charged with cruelty to livestock.
Luis Motola-Palacio, 36, already faced second offense DUI and driving under suspension charges for the Friday morning incident.
Cruelty to livestock is a Class 4 Felony. If convicted he could face up to five years in prison, an up to $10,000 fine or both.
According to Grand Island police, Motola–Palacio had the malnourished chickens in his SUV when he was pulled over for not having his headlights on.
About half of those chickens were dead. The other half remain at the Central Nebraska Humane Society.
Monday, Motola-Palacio waived his right to a preliminary hearing in the case. He'll appear in district court at the end of the month.
During Monday's appearance Motola-Palacio also pled no contest to charges in two other cases: unauthorized use of a financial transaction device and driving during suspension. In his exchange for his plea, the state dropped one misdemeanor charge and didn't pursue another. That sentencing is scheduled for March.
Motola-Palacio has yet another case pending in Hall County District Court. Authorities said he shot another man in the leg during a fight as they were slaughtering pigs in G.I. last year.
In court, his attorney told the judge that he slaughters animals for a living.
Motola-Palacio had been released from jail on his own recognizance last week. That bond continues.