However, Andra Grace's injuries were so severe her rescuers didn't think at
the time that she would survive. Per Susan Bird, the writer of this post on
Care2 -"She lost most of her rear toenails, the tendons in her knees were exposed,
and her paws were "degloved." Her belly and mammary glands were also torn
up." After hearing about her horrible experience on Care2, donations from kind
people around the world paid for her medical care.
At a court appearance, Roger Dennis Owens admitted that someone paid him
off with drugs and alcohol to " take away" Andra Grace. Thoughtless neighbors
had complained that Andra Grace kept coming around begging for food. She had
recently given birth to a litter of puppies who were obviously gotten rid of. And
her indifferent and callous owners who probably didn't give her adequate care in the first
place decided she should be gotten rid of as well. So they asked Owens to do
them a favor
and take Andra Grace away -- whatever that meant.
Owens agreed and instead of turning her into a shelter, he thought the
problem would be solved by tying her to his pickup truck and driving away. Did it
not even occur to him that this poor dog would suffer?
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And what a cruel joke -that according to his attorney, he does like animals
but on that day he'd been drinking and wasn't "thinking straight." How lame.
Not only was he not thinking straight, he was not thinking at all about the
ramifications of his solution to taking Andra Grace "away." God help us, we have all too
many cruel people like him trying to rationalize their cruel actions.
Judge Verdin didn't buy any of it, and before handing down her sentence she
told Owens "This is one of the cruelest things that I've seen since I've been
on the bench. She sentenced him to five years for felony "ill treatment of an
animal- the maximum under South Carolina Law. Next- she tacked on five years for being
a habitual traffic offender and six months for driving under the influence
with a suspended license. So this poor excuse for a man would now have to spend
10 and a half years in prison. According to a reporter, he showed no remorse.
Thank God for Judges like Letitia Verdin for getting justice for Andra
Grace. Sadly, we don't have a lot of judges like her though I am speaking from years back
when all too many judges just gave the animal abuser a slap on the wrist. Too
many states considered animal abuse a misdemeanor then. I hope that has
changed. If so, I am pretty sure it is through the efforts of Legal Animal Defense
and other animal rights groups.
Andra Grace is now living in Florida with her new adoptive parent, Lynne
Dixon and her family. She has healed nicely though some of her fur will never
grow back. Of course, she will always have both physical and emotional scars from her
horrific ordeal, but thanks to the petition on Care 2 and reader response in her
behalf, she is today safe with a family who loves her. Her abuser will forever
carry the stigma of a felony conviction for animal abuse. (If interested, you will
probably find pictures of beautiful Andra Grace on the internet.)
ANOTHER JUDGE NOT SO CARING.
In my homespun book --"Blame it on Peaches." I devote a chapter to the
terrible animal abuse of a Wisconsin man and the lack of justice for his
animals from an
unjust and uncaring judge -- the antithesis of Judge Letitia Verdin. I am so grateful
to Brenda McGuire who helped me write my book. Re my writing -It was a small
enterprise, but I am forever grateful to her for publishing it because I often refer
to it --
remembering some of my now departed beautiful companion animals of which Peaches was the first. I also refer to it for other related animal
NIKKO ET AL.
In 1998 Nikko, an 8-month old Shepherd mix suffered horribly from the hands
of a 37 year- old man -- father of two who lived in Janesville, WI. He
confessed to duct-taping Nikko's mouth shut and sealing him in a plastic container. His
10 year-old daughter listened to Nikko crying and whining for a week until he mercifully died in the plastic container in the family's living room.
Despite his confession and the police finding Nikko's body in this " home"
from hell, the Rocky County District Attorney said he did not have enough
evidence to convict because the decomposed remains of Nikko were not saved.
Unbelievably, the judge agreed, and the case was dismissed.
There was a big uproar locally, and even reached the ears of outraged
animal rights people in other states. In July of 1998, BH of Janesville, WI did go to
trial - this time with a new judge. Now it was also found out that this animal torturer was
guilty of other horrendous cruel acts to the cats he had snapped up "free to a good
home." (Never, ever advertise this way. Always charge something and above all
lesson the need to get "rid" of animals by neutering and spaying your companion
Four of these "free to a good home" cats suffered unimaginably. BH broke
Nellie's two back legs, broke her neck, and sodomized her. Nellie's body was found
in his house. Nellie's rectum was stretched to 10 times its normal size. A used
condom was found near her lifeless body.
Butterball, Monkey, and Morris were also all found dead in BH's house.
Their skulls were crushed. Their jaws were broken. They were strangled with ropes.
Nikko and these innocent abused cats would find justice at last when this
horrible man was found guilty on five counts of animal cruelty and one count of
weapons possession. Each count carried a 2-year penalty. Applause broke out after
the sentence was handed down. A big thanks was due to Judge Richard T. Werner for taking a stand against this unspeakable torture of innocent
Still, I personally believe that 12 years for this cruel man was not
enough. What about you?