RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — A Red Bay woman facing manslaughter charges after her dogs allegedly attacked two women was set to appear in a Franklin County courtroom on Tuesday for a pretrial hearing.
But, during roll call at the courthouse on Tuesday morning, the judge went through 200 names on the docket – and Brandy Dowdy’s was not one of them. When News 19 spoke with Franklin County District Attorney Jeff Barksdale, he said the hearing was very unlikely to happen Tuesday because of Dowdy’s health condition.
39-year-old Brandy Lee Dowdy was indicted on two counts of manslaughter after prosecutors say her dogs killed two women in separate incidents in 2022. She’s also facing a violation of ‘Emily’s Law,’ signed by Governor Kay Ivey in 2018, which imposes felony penalties on owners of dogs that seriously injure or kill a person depending on the circumstances surrounding the attack.
Authorities said Dowdy’s dogs attacked Michelle Ann Sheeks in April 2022. On April 28, 2022, Sheeks was walking near her home when her husband said she was attacked by a pack of wild dogs. Investigators say that several dogs dragged Sheeks down a hill and a neighbor got the dogs away from her before calling 911.
Her injuries were so bad that it took six surgeries and grafts to stabilize her. Sheeks later died due to complications from those injuries on July 12.
Those same dogs are also accused of killing Jacqueline Summer Beard, an Alabama Department of Public Health worker who tried to follow up after the April incident. Dowdy was arrested and charged with manslaughter in connection with Beard’s death.
Dowdy’s trial was set to start in April of this year, however, the judge granted a motion to delay proceedings because of emergency medical care. Then, in July, the judge granted a motion to continue the case due to Dowdy’s cancer treatment.
The district attorney added that he isn’t sure how Dowdy’s case would proceed due to her medical condition.
News 19 has also reached out to Dowdy’s attorneys for clarity on her condition and scheduling, but at this time we haven’t heard back.