Army sergeant convicted of shooting dog
Army Special Forces Sgt. Justin Noyes Blehar won’t serve jail time for shooting his neighbor’s dog earlier this year.
Blehar, 32, was charged with felony animal abuse, but the jury convicted him of misdemeanor animal abuse and shooting in a prohibited area after a three-day jury trial in Stafford County Circuit Court in Virginia, Fredericksburg.com reported.
According to prosecutors, Blehar shot a brown Labrador retriever that came into his yard on March 31. The dog lived with a family two houses away and repeatedly had gotten loose in the neighborhood. On March 8, Blehar’s wife called animal control after the dogs confronted her in her yard, and Blehar asked animal control officers if he could shoot the dog if it came back into his yard. He was told no, unless it was in self-defense.
On March 31 the dogs came into his yard again. He chased them away once, but they returned. Blehar said Zu Zu, the more aggressive of the two dogs, came at him and he felt threatened. He shot the dog twice with his Glock 9 mm weapon.
Prosecutors argued that Blehar was annoyed with the dog, not scared of it.
The jury recommended that Blehar pay a total of $1,146 in fines. The judge withheld the imposition of the jury verdict at the request of defense attorney, who requested time to file additional motions, including one to overturn the jury decision.
Posted by John Woestendiek October 16th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: army, blehar, conviction, courts, cruelty, dog, justin blehar, law, neighbor, shoots, shot, special forces, stafford county, virginia, zuzu