Iowa man pleads not guilty in deaths of 3,000 feeder hogs

RANDALIA, Iowa (AP) — A northeast Iowa farmer has pleaded not guilty to neglect charges after more than 3,000 feeder hogs died on his property.

Derek David Smith, 41, of Randalia, waived an arraignment and filed a written not guilty plea to one count of livestock neglect on Monday, the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier reported.

Court records indicate Smith was hired by Valley Farms to care for the hogs. Authorities found more than 3,000 hogs dead at Smith’s confinement operation on June 2, according to court records.

The animals died from lack of feed and another 200 hogs had to be euthanized for health reasons, according to the records.

Smith’s trial is tentatively set for August in Fayette County District Court in West Union.

The charge is a serious misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a $2,560 fine.

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