NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WRKN) – A man summoned to court in Davidson County brought what he calls his service animal.
The problem? The so-called service animal is a goat.
Erick Brown was issued an environmental citation by Metro Animal Care and Control for not getting the proper permit to own livestock.His goat, named Deer, is regularly tethered to his car for hours at a time, according to witnesses.
After multiple warnings, Brown was issued the citation.
When Brown brought the animal to court, dressed in a shirt and tie, he was told the goat was not allowed inside.
“The city tells me I can’t have a goat in the city limits at all, even if it’s a service animal,” Brown told News 2 outside the courthouse.
Friends tell News 2 Brown has a mental handicap and has been homeless for years. They say they have been working to get him a livestock permit so he can legally own the goat in Nashville.
Brown says the animal is therapeutic.
“The goat is important to me because he helps me communicate with people and reach out to people, to be able to spread my message of love and peace throughout the world,” said Brown. “Because I’m a person with disabilities, and I have a hard time talking to people and getting people to talk with me.”
A friend of Brown who is also an attorney told News 2 the judge delayed a decision on his case, giving them time to work on getting a livestock permit.