State v. Barbara Fogl, a case we prosecuted for the Medina County SPCA.
Fogl was charged with multiple counts of neglect related to her care of 16 animals, including cats and Saluki, Afghan, and Lowchen breed dogs.
The animals were kept in deplorable conditions. A strong odor of feces and urine could be detected when standing outside of the home. Many of the dogs were kept in makeshift kennels, where they rested on concrete floors covered in filthy newspaper and other debris. The Afghan and Saluki breed dogs were in the worst condition. Those dogs had grooming issues, were underweight, and had untreated tumors and/or other veterinary conditions.
Fogl is a groomer and former breeder, who allegedly became overwhelmed by her own health conditions.
As part of a plea agreement, Fogl pleaded no contest to 3 counts of animal cruelty.
She is not permitted to own or keep any animals, other than two family dogs which were spayed as part of the agreement, for a period of 5 years. She was ordered to pay $600 in fines and $5,980.30 in restitution for the care of the animals. She is also subject to random, unannounced inspections to ensure the humane treatment of the remaining two animals in her care.
The animals have all recovered.
State v. Nathan Vapenik, a case we prosecuted for the Medina County SPCA, jointly investigated with Brunswick Animal Control.
Defendant was found guilty of two counts of companion animal cruelty for keeping two emaciated, dehydrated dogs in his car. He tied their leashes to the steering wheel, and left the windows cracked open. The dogs were discovered when one was seen hanging by his throat out of thecar window. Fortunately, they were rescued in time.
The Defendant was sentenced to 90 days in jail, 80 of which were suspended. He served 10 days. He was fined $350 per count ($700 total.) He is also required to pay $498 in restitution to the SPCA. Finally, Defendant was placed on probation for 5 years. During that time, he is not permitted to possess, own or reside with any animals, and he is subject to random inspections.
Many thanks to Humane Agent Mary Jo Johnson and Animal Control Officer Mike Kellums for their good work on this case.
State v. David Scott, a case we prosecuted for the Brunswick Hills Police Department.
David Scott shot and killed a dog named Patches with a pellet gun. Patches was trespassing on his property, but the dog was at least 60 feet away from him and was in the act of departing the property. Scott claims that the dog was fighting with his own dog who was tethered just prior to the shooting. The officer examined Scott’s dog and saw no evidence of injuries.
Scott was found guilty of Injuring Animals, a 2nd degree misdemeanor.
This case presented some difficulties for a number of reasons. Generally, one cannot be convicted of an animal cruelty offense if the act was deemed to be “necessary” or “justifiable.” We knew that some people might find the shooting justifiable as a means for preventing future trespasses, especially since the weapon was a pellet gun, not a more powerful firearm. Pellet guns can be lethal, as in in this case, where the pellet penetrated the dog’s abdomen.
Defendant was fined $500 and was ordered to pay restitution to the owner of Patches.
Update on State v. Antoinette Kuenzer, a case we prosecuted for the Medina County SPCA in the Medina Municipal Court.
Kuenzer was recently sentenced on her conviction for animal cruelty for starving two horses.
Kuenzer was sentenced to 90 days in jail. Kuenzer served 28 days. 62 days were suspended contingent upon successful completion of 5 years’ probation. During probation, she must submit to random drug screening, and is prohibited from owning possessing or living at a residence with animals. She is also subject to random, unannounced inspections.