Judge Imposes Penalties in Dutch Dog Case

Feb 15th @ 6:11 am in Local Events, News, People, Public Service by Scott Staley
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Jeremiah Aguilar appears in court Thursday prior to the verdict by Judge Richard Brown.  Photo courtesy of William Woody with THE WATCH.

Jeremiah Aguilar has been ordered to pay $1,000 in restitution to the victim of a vicious animal attack that occurred on November 14, 2012.  Aguilar, the owner of the animal, had been found guilty on January 17 of violating the city’s vicious animals ordinance (City of Montrose Municipal Code, Section 6-2-9(A)).  The victim’s medical expenses resulting from the attack now total $28,027.

The victim (seated) and Animal Control Officer Christine Gibson appear in Montrose Court Thursday. Photo courtesy of William Woody of THE WATCH.

In addition to restitution, the defendant received a one-year suspended sentence as follows:

  • 20 days in jail – 18 days suspended and two days served
  • $500 fine, $250 suspended
  • surrender the animal to Animal Control

The judge’s order to euthanize the animal, issued on January 17, remains unchanged.  The defense attorney in the case has stated her intent to appeal the decision to Montrose County Court.   The order to euthanize will not be carried out until the appeal process is complete.

Prior to rendering his decision, the judge provided a review of testimony and evidence presented in the trial on January 17.  The judge expressed his deep concern over the “lynch-mob” mentality spurred by Internet accounts of the attack that contain false, inflammatory, incomplete and misleading information.  He noted that these postings have resulted in threats of violence against the victim with no apparent attempt by the defendant to correct the accounts or to mitigate threats against the victim.  The defendant was instructed to refrain from further Internet postings that could result in harassment or intimidation of the victim.

You can read far more testimony on this story from Katharhynn Heidelberg with the Montrose Daily Press.

Jeremiah Aguilar and Heather are very emotional in court Thursday. Photo courtesy of William Woody of THE WATCH.