Eastern Missouri handler found guilty in dogs' deaths

Sunday, June 6, 2010 | 4:15 p.m. CDT; updated 5:08 p.m. CDT, Sunday, June 6, 2010

HILLSBORO — A judge has found an eastern Missouri dog handler guilty of animal abuse for leaving eight show dogs in a hot van overnight. All but one of the dogs died.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that Judge Raymond Dickhaner handed down the guilty verdict Friday in the case against Mary Wild. The 25-year-old Arnold woman chose to forgo a jury trial and allowed Dickhaner to determine the outcome of her case.

Wild arrived home with the dogs from a show in Iowa early one morning in June 2009. She told police she planned to put the dogs in kennels in her garage, but because of the heat, decided to leave them in portable kennels in a van. She said she set up fans, opened a door open and left windows partly open.

Authorities say temperatures in the van might have reached 120 degrees.

Sentencing has been set for July 1.


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