A lawyer says his clients, accused of animal cruelty, want to be tried by a jury. The couple facing 17 counts of animal cruelty entered no-contest pleas in district court at Van Buren. Jury trials are not available in district courts, where all cases are tried by a judge. But verdicts in district courts can be appealed to a circuit court, where jury trials are an option. The misdemeanor animal cruelty charges were filed May 30th against 41-year-old Jerome Carroll and 36-year-old Delana Carroll of rural Van Buren. The charges stemmed from a deputy sheriff`s report that he found 54 animals dead, dying or starving on three to four acres of land the couple owns southeast of Alma.