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Animal neglect

Conviction for Animal Neglect after Choking Puppy

State v. James Wayne, a case we prosecuted on behalf of the Cleveland Animal Protective League.

Wayne was charged with a 1st degree misdemeanor of knowingly committing an act of companion animal cruelty for choking a puppy to death on February 10, 2015. Wayne has a record of at least 16 prior felonies.

The case was set for trial twice. Unfortunately, the only eye-witness failed to appear in court, and her current address is unknown. The Defendant instead pled guilty to animal neglect for failing to provide necessary veterinary care for an animal, which is also a 1st degree misdemeanor under Cleveland City Ordinances.

Wayne is now prohibited from owning or possessing companion animals indefinitely. He must complete an anger management course, submit to monitoring by the APL for 5 years, and pay a $250 fine plus court costs. Failure to abide by these terms may result in 180 days in jail.

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Sisters to complete 1000 hours of community service for starving their dog to death

State of Ohio v. Christina Davis and Delores Davis, a case prosecuted for the Cleveland Animal Protective League.

Delores and Christina Davis, sisters, were charged with one second degree misdemeanor count related to the starvation death of their dog. The dog was found deceased and emaciated in their yard. The sisters stated they relied on neighbors to provide them with free dog food. The dog’s bowls contained only filth and leaves.

Each defendant pleaded no contest to the charge. They must each complete 500 hours of community service and 5 years of active probation, during which time they cannot own animals and are subject to the APL’s monitoring. 90 days in jail were imposed, and suspended. They will pay court costs.

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Sentencing for Youngstown animal neglect case

State v. Akesha Bowman, a case we prosecuted for Animal Charity, the humane society serving Mahoning County.

Bowman was charged with two counts of companion animal cruelty for keeping her dog “Sassy,” (renamed “Hershey,”) in a cage filled with urine and fecal waste. The cage was too small. Sores were observed on the top of her head from rubbing on the bars. She was also emaciated. Bowman pled no contest and was found guilty on both counts.

The dog was forfeited by the Court, and is now doing well in her new home. (Before and after pictures provided below.)

Judge Robert Milich sentenced Bowman to 90 days in jail for each count, consecutive, for a total of 180 days. Jail time is suspended pending completion of 5 years’ probation, the maximum time allowed by law. During that time, she is prohibited from owning or keeping animals, and is subject to inspections by probation or the humane agent to make sure that she is not keeping animals. She was fined $250 plus costs, plus a $100 probation fee for each case, and must complete 80 hours of community service.

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Ohio House Bill 198 Reduces Humane Societies’ Power to Protect Animals

ANIMAL LEGISLATION UPDATE:
HB 198, which abolishes Ohio Humane Societies’ ability to appoint prosecutors to prosecute crimes against animals, was introduced in the Ohio House on 5/11/15. This is the first legislative effort to REDUCE a Humane Society’s ability to protect animals.

Primary Sponsors: Reps. Steve Hambley (R-69) and Greta Johnson (D-35)

Summary: To repeal section 2931.18 of the Revised Code to abolish the humane society’s authority to employ an attorney to prosecute certain violations of law dealing with animal cruelty.

Find your Legislator here: https://www.legislature.ohio.gov/legislators/find-my-legislators

HB 198 Hurts Animals

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Jail time for dog starvation case in Ashland, Ohio

State v. Michael Johnson, a case we prosecuted at the request of the Ashland County Humane Society, investigated by Ashland County Dog Warden, Tom Kosht.

Johnson was found guilty of two counts of companion animal cruelty for abandoning two dogs in a home without adequate food or water. One died of starvation. The other was dehydrated, but was successfully rehabilitated and has been adopted to a new, loving home.

Johnson tried to put the blame on a man named Louie Thompson who he said was paid $500 cash to care for the animals. However, Johnson could not locate Thompson, and the address he gave for Thompson had not been occupied for some time. Judge John Good told Johnson that he did not believe his story.

Johnson was sentenced to 90 days, the maximum jail sentence for a 2nd degree misdemeanor. He will begin serving that sentence next week. 90 additional days were suspended pending successful completion of 5 years’ probation. During that time, Johnson may not possess and companion animals. He was ordered to pay $500 in fines, $42 in restitution to the veterinarian, $125 restitution to the Ashland County Humane Society, and court costs.

I am pleased to report that Judge Good gave a strong message about the seriousness of animal neglect. It is our hope both Dog Warden Tom Kosht and Judge John Good of the Ashland Municipal Court will receive positive feedback from the community.

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Farm animal cruelty conviction in Montgomery County

A vivid reminder that all water is not potable. State v. Brenda Moore, a case we prosecuted for the Humane Society of Greater Dayton and the Montgomery County Animal Resource Center.

Brenda Moore was convicted of 7 counts of animal neglect involving 10 goats, one pig, 8 ducks, 13 chickens, 7 rabbits and one dog. The animals were suffering from a variety of conditions, including dehydration, upper respiratory infections, pneumonia, overgrown hooves, coccidiosis and lice.

Moore forfeited all of the animals, and is prohibited from keeping any animals except for two pets for five years. She will be subject during that time to random inspections by the Humane Agent. She faces 90 days in jail if she fails to successfully complete probation. Moore was fined a total of $650 plus court costs.

In our view, limiting animals and providing for random inspections is the best way to rehabilitate an offender like this one, and to prevent future animal neglect. A lengthy jail sentence (90 days is the maximum provided by law) punishes the offender, but puts him or her in a position of collecting more animals immediately upon release without any education or monitoring.

In this case, Moore now lives in an apartment, so she is unable to acquire farm animals.

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Youngstown man convicted of starving dog

State v. Wendel Gray, a case we prosecuted in the Youngstown Municipal Court for Animal Charity of Ohio, the humane society serving Mahoning County.

Gray was found guilty of one count of companion animal cruelty for failing to provide adequate food for his dog. Given the fact that Gray voluntarily surrendered ownership of the animal, and accepted the fact that he is in no position to keep animals at this time, he was placed on probation for a period of one year. During that time, he is prohibited from owning, keeping or living with any animals. Gray is subject to random inspections by Animal Charity.

If Gray violates the terms of his probation, he could serve up to 90 days in jail. He is also required to pay court costs.

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Savannah man, Michael Johnson, convicted of starving two dogs

State v. Michael Johnson, a case we prosecuted for the Ashland County Dog Shelter/Dog Warden.

Johnson was charged with animal cruelty related to the starvation of his two Golden Retriever dogs, Laney and Sadie.

The Ashland County Dog Warden visited Johnson’s property when it was reported that a dog had been abandoned there. Sadly, Sadie had already passed away. There was a bag containing dog food in the kitchen, just feet away from where both dogs were confined.

Johnson entered a plea to two counts of animal neglect, both second degree misdemeanors, and was found guilty.

Laney recovered and Johnson surrendered ownership to the Dog Warden today.

Sentencing is set for May 4, 2015.

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Cleveland woman sentenced for neglect of two dogs

State v. Glenda Murray, a case we prosecuted for the Cleveland Animal Protective League.

Glenda Murray was charged related to her neglect of two emaciated, ill dogs tethered without shelter in cold weather. Glenda Murray’s husband, Fuller Murray, who was also charged, is currently serving jail time on felony firearms and assault charges and his animal cruelty case is still awaiting adjudication.

Glenda Murray was found guilty of four counts and was sentenced to the maximum jail term (1 ½ years), all suspended. The suspended time may be imposed if she fails to complete 5 years’ probation. During probation, she is prohibited from owning or keeping any animal. She must also submit to random inspections. Murray must complete 100 hours of community service and pay $230 in restitution to the APL.

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Wauseon, Ohio man guilty of neglecting pony

State v. Andrew Fox, a case we prosecuted for the Toledo Area Humane Society in the Sylvania Municipal Court.

Andrew Fox was found guilty of one count of animal cruelty for neglecting the care of one horse and one pony. The animals were kept in filthy conditions. The issue of greatest concern was the fact that the pony had very long, overgrown hooves which made it difficult for the animal to walk normally, and caused unnecessary suffering.

Defendant voluntarily surrendered both animals to the Humane Society. Sentencing is scheduled for May 14, 2015.

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