|Friday, September 24, 2010
By K.A. WAGONER – Staff WriterThe Franlin New-Post
A Henry woman has been charged with 24 counts of animal cruelty. Heidi Ann Sendall, 49, has been charged with failing to provide adequate food and care for four horses, two calves, a donkey and a pony, according to Capt. Marvin Woods with Franklin County Animal Control.
According to Virginia law, the seizure of an equine can only be done by a state veterinarian. And the seizure of agricultural animals can only be done on the recommendation of the state veterinarian.
Woods has been working with the state veterinarian’s office for six months to get a recommendation to seize the animals, he said.
In April, Woods contacted Sendall about the condition of her animals, and she signed an agreement, promising to provide hay for the animals in the pasture at all times, Woods said. The agreement was based on the recommendation of Dr. Jonathan Winslow, a state veterinarian. Woods sent photographs of the animals to Winslow, who scored the condition of the animals as a 3 on a scale of 1 to 9 at that time, Woods said.
But after observing the animals in the pasture without adequate food on several more occasions and contacting Sendall, Woods obtained the warrants for animal cruelty, he said.
When Deputy B.C. Webb with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office served the warrants, he observed several dogs, which he described as “extremely thin with their bones showing through their skin. At least one dog had an open wound or sore on its back,” according to a search warrant affidavit. At that time, Webb took photographs of the dogs.
Webb contacted Sendall, and she said she was out of town, according to the affidavit. Webb was so concerned about the dogs, he purchased food for them.
With the information obtained by Webb, Woods was able to seize three Great Danes, a poodle and a mixed-breed dog at Sendall’s residence on Will Hill Road earlier this week. The dogs have been taken to a veterinary hospital, where they are being treated for malnourishment, wounds and skin conditions, Woods said.
A hearing is set in Franklin County General District Court on Thursday, Sept. 30 at 9 a.m. to determine whether the seized animals have been cruelly treated, according to Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Patrick Nix.
If neglect or cruelty is determined by the court, Sendall could face more charges and be ordered to pay the expenses incurred by the county for the care and treatment of the animals. She could also be prohibited from owning or possessing any companion animals.
Animal cruelty is a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
|Henry woman facing animal cruelty charges