Stettler County couple found guilty of animal endangerment

Stettler County couple found guilty of animal endangerment

Sentencing adjourned to Red Deer

A Stettler area couple was found guilty under the Animal Protection Act.

Judge B. D. Rosborough found Garnet E. Schultz and Joann Edith Schultz guilty of causing an animal to be in distress and failing to provide proper care to an animal.

“There’s enough evidence to find them guilty,” Judge Rosborough said during a special sitting of Stettler provincial court Sept. 25.

In March, the couple filed a Vukelich application, challenging the validity of the search warrant dismissed without having a voir dire. A Vukelich hearing determines whether or not the court will decline the accused from requesting a voir dire on a Charter issue.

They based the Vukelich application on their assertion that the peace officer’s grounds to conduct his search on Jan. 10, 2017, were obtained illegally.

In May, Judge Rosborough, however, rejected the Vukelich application. He said that although there was support for the Schultz’s Vukelich application that the peace officer did an illegal perimeter search on Jan. 9, 2017, which provided him with the grounds to get the search warrant executed Jan. 10.

“Without the observations made by him on the first day, there is a reasonable likelihood that the resulting search lacked the necessary ‘reasonable and probably grounds,’” said Judge Rosborough in his May 2018 decision. “It is sufficient, of itself, to defeat this motion.”

Prosecutor Brittany Ashmore and defence Rodney Clark told the court Sept. 25 in Stettler provincial c ourt that they had entered into an agreed statement of facts.

The couple will be sentenced on Oct. 24 at 9:30 a.m. in Red Deer provincial court.