State v. Ionel Jura; a case we prosecuted which was investigated by the Humane Society of Greater Akron and the Peninsula Police.
Jura was convicted after a two day jury trial of all 9 counts of animal cruelty and one count of animals at large for neglecting to provide proper care for 10 goats and a calf at his property in Boston Township.
The adult animals were tied up outside with ropes and chain on a hot, humid day in June without shade or access to water. Some leads were tangled severely restricting the animals’ movement. One adult goat and a kid were tangled or had legs caught in a pile of lumber with protruding nails. Most of the animals were excessively thin, and suffering from dehydration and other parasites, including lice, The examining veterinarian concluded that they were all at risk of dying from heat stroke, given their weakened body condition and the weather.
The animals were seized and eventually surrendered by the Defendant to Happy Trails Farm Animal Sanctuary.
The Defendant was sentenced to 90 days in jail on each of 9 counts of cruelty, and 30 days on the animals at large count. All jail time was suspended, contingent upon the Defendant’s successful completion of 5 years’ probation. During that time, he is prohibited from keeping farm animals on any property he owns or controls. Humane officers have authority to inspect the premises to ensure compliance. He is also required to complete a course in farm animal care, at least 8 hours in duration, and to complete 150 hours of community service for the Humane Society. Total fines were $4,750, of which all was suspended except for $950. Restitution was ordered to Happy Trails in the amount of $1,200.
State v. Diane and Thomas Silbaugh, cases we prosecuted on behalf of the Humane Society of Greater Akron in the Stow Municipal Court.
14 horses were removed from the Defendants’ property in Cuyahoga Falls in subzero temperatures this past February. Water buckets were frozen solid, and some horses were caked with frozen urine and fecal material. Horses suffered from dehydration, lack of adequate food, missing fur, untreated wounds and other treatable ailments due to neglect. Three were humanely euthanized due to their condition.
The Defendants were each found guilty of one count of animal cruelty. Judge Kim Hoover gave the defendants a blistering lecture on the seriousness of these crimes, and then sentenced both to the maximum jail time (90 days) and the maximum fine ($750.) Diane was taken immediately into custody. Thomas was permitted to serve his sentence at a facility where he is receiving rehabilitation for a medical condition, but will wear an ankle bracelet which does not allow him to move beyond a very narrow perimeter.
Defendants surrendered all 14 horses six months after the seizure. As a result, they have been ordered to pay more than $12,000 to Happy Trails Farm Animal Sanctuary for board and care.
After their jail term, they will serve 12 months probation during which time they may not own, possess or live with animals except for the 5 dogs and 3 birds they currently possess. All animals must be kept in a humane, sanitary and lawful manner. They are subject to random inspections.
State v. Mark Grizer, a case we prosecuted for the Humane Society of Greater Akron was resolved today. Grizer was convicted of two counts of companion animal cruelty for allowing two of his dogs to become emaciated. The animals were found in filthy conditions. Grizer surrendered the dogs, who have been rehabilitated and are both doing well in their new homes.
As a part of the sentence in this case, the Magistrate at the Barberton Municipal Court prohibited Grizer from possessing animals of any kind indefinitely. This means that
Grizer will be unable to possess animals for life, unless the Court orders otherwise at a later date. Grizer must also submit to random inspections for 5 years to make sure that he has no animals. He must also repay the Humane Society for veterinary costs. If he violates the terms of his sentence, Grizer faces up to 90 days in jail, a $100 fine and court costs.