R v Paulsen, 2015 BCPC 45 (CanLII)

This is a sentencing hearing for Emma Paulsen. She was charged and pled guilty with being a person responsible for animals, to wit dogs, and failing to care for the animals, including protecting the animals from circumstances that were likely to cause the animals to be in distress in violation of s. 9.1(1) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and did thereby commit an offence contrary to s. 24(1) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act.

She also pled guilty to with intent to mislead, causing a peace officer, to enter on or continue an investigation by reporting that an offence had been committed when it had not been committed in violation of s. 140(1)(c) and 140(2)(b) of the Criminal Code.

Ms. Paulsen reported to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police that six dogs had been stolen or gone missing from her pickup. She said that the six dogs were in the back of her pickup truck, she went to the washroom in the park, and when she returned back to her truck the dogs were gone.

Ms. Paulsen eventually admitted that she had gone shopping for a short period while leaving all the dogs in the back of her truck, with water, and all the windows left open. When she got back she checked on the dogs and realized that they had all perished due to the heat. She said that she panicked and disposed of the dogs on some land somewhere, and then made up the story of the theft to hide the truth.

The Court went over the facts of the case and over the personal circumstances of Ms. Paulsen. The Court also addressed the victim impact statements and the central themes of the loss each victim experienced.

After going through the submissions and the appropriate law and analysis, the Court concluded that pursuant to s. 24(3) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, Ms. Paulson was prohibited from owning or having custody or control of an animal for a period of ten years. Additionally,  pursuant to s. 24(3) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, she was prohibited from having custody or control of an animal for remuneration or business purposes for life.

She was sentenced to three months for each charge (for a total of 6 months imprisonment) and was expected to pay a victim fine surcharge, along with a probation order for two years with terms and conditions.

Source: Case Law

Jurisdiction: British Columbia

Topics: carCriminal CodecrueltydeaddogdogsExposureguiltyheatHeatstrokeRCMPsentenceTruckVictim

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