WOOD COUNTY, OH (WTOL) - The 6th District Court of Appeals sided with the Ohio Department of Agriculture on Friday in their legal battle with Kenneth Hetrick, the owner of Tiger Ridge Exotics who has been trying to regain possession of animals taken from him by the Department in 2015.
The Court of Appeals overruled a decision by the Wood County Court of Appeals which previously had ruled the state must provide Hetrick with two different wild animal permits.
The Court of Appeals decided Hetrick does not get these permits, which means he will not be getting his animals back.
The Hetrick family however, could appeal the decision to the Ohio Supreme Court.
Mark Bruce, the Communications Director for the Department of Agriculture, made a statement after the ruling:
"The Ohio Department of Agriculture thanks the court for its work and is pleased the judges ruled in our favor. This adds to the long list of rulings solidifying ODA's regulatory authority over dangerous wild animals in Ohio. The animals remain in ODA's custody and are in good health at the various sanctuaries where they are currently housed."
The Hetrick family is currently declining to comment on the ruling.