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Florida woman takes emotional support chicken case to federal court

The Lee County woman is fighting to keep the chickens she says help her with her PTSD.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this Oct. 21, 2015, file photo, cage-free chickens walk in a fenced pasture at an organic farm near Waukon, Iowa. Michigan would become the fifth state to require that egg-laying hens be housed in cage-free areas under legislation approved by the state House and backed as aligning farms with where the industry is headed. The main bill is part of a broader update of the state's animal industry law. It will soon go to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

FORT MYERS, Fla. — A Florida woman is taking her emotional support chicken case to federal court.

Karen Morris lives at Sunshine Mobile Home Park in Lee County with her three chickens, according to NBC-2 Fort Myers.

Lee County says Morris is violating zoning codes with barnyard friends named Rachel, Rudy and Rita. Morris says the chickens help her with her battle with PTSD, according to NBC-2.

Court documents show that Morris’s psychiatrist wrote a letter to her landlords to show them that the chickens benefit her as emotional support animals.

10News reviewed court documents that reveal that during a code enforcement proceeding, Morris was ordered to pay a $285 fine and rehome her chickens within 30 days. If she doesn't follow those rules, she could be slammed with a $25-a-day fee for every day she is in violation of the code, according to the lawsuit. 

Now, Morris and her lawyer are taking the case to federal court to fight for her chickens.

Fox 4 said Morris has trained her chickens to stay inside so they don’t bother other people in her community.

Morris told Fox 4 she's happy her case is heading to a federal court but is upset that the community she thought was her home was fighting against her.

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