Arabian horse. (Pixabay image)

Shuswap woman found not guilty of animal cruelty charges

Supreme court justice finds Salmon Arm resident did not wilfully harm horses

A Supreme Court justice found that a Salmon Arm woman had shortcomings regarding the care of her horses, but she did not neglect them wilfully.

Described in court documents as “an experienced and fiercely independent horsewoman,” Charlene Robinson was found not guilty of two counts in connection with animal cruelty in BC Supreme Court in Kamloops on Oct. 24. The charges resulted from complaints to and interactions with the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in December 2013.

Robinson had 20 Arabian horses and one pig in her care on her rural property in Salmon Arm at this time.

With input from a veterinarian, the SPCA had concluded that all Robinson’s animals were in distress due to inadequate water, feed, shelter and care, and had seized three of her mares and two stallions.

Justice Marchand ruled Crown counsel had not met the onus of establishing Robinson wilfully caused her animals unnecessary pain, suffering or injury.

Related: Women faces animal cruelty charges

Regarding Count 1, the judge’s findings were: “Ms. Robinson exercised poor judgment, her efforts fell short and she put her animals in jeopardy. Her conduct, however, did not reach the required level of recklessness.”

Regarding his findings for Count 2, he stated: “For the reasons I have already given, I am not satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that Ms. Robinson’s shortcoming were wilful. She did not intentionally harm her animals but she did exercise poor judgment. For example, it was careless of her not to prepare for a sudden turn in the weather. While Ms. Robinson’s conduct was concerning and problematic, she did not cross the line into recklessness.”

In her defence, Robinson had stated her herd had experienced an overall loss of body condition in early December 2013 due to an unexpected cold snap that caught her off guard.

“It had been a warm fall and Ms. Robinson acknowledged that she should have transitioned her horses off her pasture earlier,” states a court document.

She had also stated all of her horses had adequate shelter; she said she personally took care of her horses’ needs including dental care, farrier work and deworming; and she testified that she observed her animals several times per day and never observed any in a state of pain.

Court documents state: “She says that a number of factors beyond her control caused a decline in the condition of her animals and that she was doing everything in her power to meet their needs at the time of the seizures.”


@SalmonArm
marthawickett@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Rockets continue road trip Wednesday night in Prince Geroge

Kelowna dropped game one of their four game road-trip on Saturday against Kamloops

Quails’ Gate Winery to celebrate 30 year anniversary

A limited amount of tickets are available for the event

Hundreds attend first annual climate and food conference in Kelowna

Over 25 industry experts spoke at the two-day event

Kelowna Gospel Mission hosts street-hockey game to fight homelessness stigma

The hockey game was filmed to bring more attention to homelessness in the Okanagan

Pug-O-Ween 2019 to take Kelowna dog park by snort

Calling all pug-owners and Halloween lovers!

BC SPCA: From walking dogs to sponsoring galas

The Canadian Jewelry Exchange is a sponsor for this year’s gala

Horvat’s hat trick lifts Canucks to 5-2 win over Red Wings

First career three-goal game for Vancouver captain

Saanich Gulf-Islands’s Elizabeth May coy about leadership plans

The federal Green party leader talks possibility of running as MP without being leader

Estheticians can’t be forced to wax male genitals, B.C. tribunal rules

Langley transgender woman Jessica Yaniv was ordered to pay three salon owners $2,000 each

Two youth arrested in UBC carjacking at gunpoint, after being spotted in stolen Kia

‘A great deal of credit is due the alert person who called us,’ said North Vancouver Sgt. Peter DeVries

South Okanagan man charged following armed standoff gets bail

Information on the proceedings is limited due to publication ban

People’s Party of Canada’s anti-immigration views ‘didn’t resonate’ with voters: prof

Party was formed on anti-immigration, climate denying views in 2018

Windstorm knocks out power for 10,000 in north and central B.C.

Power slowly being restored, BC Hydro says

Behind the blue and white Carnival clown mask

Toshie Okada is named October’s Respect Works Here Community Champion

Most Read