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People v. Sitors (2006)

Defendant's Attorney:   Terence L. Kindlon

3rd Party Attorney:   Eric Schneider, Attorney for Catskill Animal Sanctuary

Topic: Horse neglect/abuse

Jurisdiction:   New York

Year Case Filed:   2006

Name of the Document:   Decision/Order

Printible Version

This action is an appeal from dismissal of criminal charges against a woman accused of acts of cruelty on her horses.  The Town Court dismissed the criminal charges, finding that since the Catskill Animal Sanctuary's petition seeking the posting of security to care for the horses was dismissed (which had a lower standard of proof than in a criminal action), this necessarily meant it would be impossible to obtain a criminal conviction under the higher standard.  Essentially, the Town Court's decision reflected a determination that one cannot violate New York's state cruelty law unless the animal dies due to lack of sustenance or care.  The County Court found this reasoning erroneous; a violation under the law occurs when one fails to provide necessary sustenance, not only those acts or omissions that result in an animal's death.  The criminal actions were thus, reinstated against defendant.


Schoharie County Court Decision/Order (March 14, 2006) (pdf file - 1004.71 KB)



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