Author Topic: Acquittal over animal cruelty charge - Tasmanian judiciary fails again  (Read 801 times)

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Acquittal over animal cruelty charge - Tasmanian judiciary fails again
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2012, 06:11:11 PM »
THE president of an organisation committed to rescuing abused and injured animals has been acquitted of one charge of animal cruelty, but two more charges remain unheard.

Animal Rescue president Jenny Sielhorst, 55, of Elizabeth Town, was accused of kicking a dog several times as it crouched on the footpath at Deloraine on September 8, 2010.

The RSPCA also alleged that she threw the dog.

Magistrate Robert Pearce heard the matter in the Launceston Magistrates Court yesterday.

Mr Pearce said a witness, Ann Alexander, said she saw Ms Sielhorst kick the dog several times from behind, on some occasions causing it to become airborne.

He said he accepted Ms Alexander's evidence over that of Ms Sielhorst, which he said appeared to be ``fabricated''.

But he said he was not satisfied the kicks were of a force ``likely to cause unreasonable and unjustifiable pain or suffering to an animal'' and therefore could not find the charge proved.

``If there was evidence that Ms Sielhorst kicked the dog as if it were a football, then I would have little trouble in finding that that was an act that would cause unjustifiable pain and suffering, but that is not the evidence in this case,'' Mr Pearce said.

However, he said it ``may be the case that the force she used was more than was reasonable in this case''.

Ms Sielhorst is also charged with dragging and throwing a dog into a vehicle at Deloraine on December 24, 2010, and striking a dog on the same day.

That matter will be heard before Magistrate Tim Hill on June 27.

17 Apr, 2012 04:00 AM