A veterinarian will be in court next week to face accusations he injected horses with vodka to calm their nerves before races at Fonner Park in Grand Island.

Jay Stewart faces four misdemeanor counts of attempting to influence a race by tampering with a horse. His trial starts Wednesday in Hall County.

In a story first reported by the Omaha World-Herald, Stewart denied any wrongdoing. He didn't immediately return a message from The Associated Press seeking comment. A person who answered the phone at his Grand Island clinic said Stewart was in surgery Friday morning.

Stewart is alleged to have administered vodka to horses in 2005 — before the fourth race Feb. 20, the sixth race Feb. 27, the fifth race March 11 and the ninth race April 9.