Case adjourned against woman whose dogs killed calves

Donal O’Regan

Reporter:

Donal O’Regan

Judge Mary Larkin said she appreciated how the defendant was dealing with the matter
SENTENCING was adjourned on a Charleville woman in relation to dogs worrying livestock as she has raised over €1,000 in compensation.

SENTENCING was adjourned on a Charleville woman in relation to dogs worrying livestock as she has raised over €1,000 in compensation.

Three dogs attacked calves resulting in the deaths of three of them at Rathmorgan, Charleville on August 27, 2012.

Elaine Williams, aged 55, of Rathmorgan, Charleville pleaded guilty to a total of 10 offences under the Control of Dogs Act at Kilmallock Court in July.

These included owner of a dog worrying livestock; uncontrolled dog (owner); no dog licence and no identification collar.

Her solicitor, Denis Linehan, said in July that there were unfortunate background circumstances.

“These dogs belonged to her late son-in-law Barry O’Brien who was killed in a tragic car accident in 2011,” said Mr Linehan.

Last Friday, the solicitor said he had been mis-instructed with regard to this.

Superintendent Pat McCarthy said it followed a report of the case in the local paper [Limerick Leader].

“I accept he did not receive the proper instructions,” said Supt McCarthy.

Judge Mary Larkin said there was no doubting that Mr Linehan was mis-instructed regarding the dogs.

The solicitor said his client had €1,200 of the €1,600 in compensation and required a short time to pay the balance.

Judge Larkin said she appreciated how Ms Williams was dealing with the matter and granted a one month adjournment.

The court previously heard that on August 27, 2012, Garda John Long received a call at 11.30pm about dog worrying of calves.

“A man informed gardai that he had shot a dog that was chasing calves in a field. He said the calves belonged to his neighbour.

“He said there were two Alsatians, which are a restricted breed, and one Terrier,” said Supt McCarthy.

Sergeant Mark Daly and Garda Long went to the owner of the calves home.

“The injured party then accompanied the gardai to the field where they observed the dead calf - a Friesian heifer.

“They observed a dead brown Alsatian with a leather collar. They also observed other calves with scratch marks consistent with being attacked by dogs,” said Supt McCarthy.

The court heard that two other calves had to be put down by a vet due to the injuries suffered.

The gardai called to the home of the defendant where they observed a black Alsatian and Terrier loose outside, outlined the superintendent.

“She was asked did she own the dogs and she said yes. Gardai informed her that they were chasing livestock, ” said Supt McCarthy, who added that the dogs hadn’t been licenced since 2009.

Ms Williams also confirmed that the Alsatian shot in the field as being hers. Mr Linehan said the dogs were usually kept in an enclosed yard.

“She was at a social event and when she came home the gate in the yard was open,” said Mr Linehan, who added that his client has “fairly” pointed out they were her dogs.

The solicitor said Ms Williams is in receipt of social welfare, as is her partner, and living in county council accommodation.

The case has been adjourned until October 15 for the balance of compensation to be paid.