In June of this year, the Lincoln County Humane Society charged a St. Catharines veterinarian with 16 counts of animal cruelty under the Criminal Code of Canada relating to alleged animal abuse. The Crown has since chosen to withdraw those charges.
The role of the Ontario SPCA and the Lincoln County Humane Society is to investigate reports of animal cruelty. From there it is up to the Crown to proceed with the case before the courts. The Society has no control over this judicial process.
When we became aware of videos depicting alleged animal abuse at the hands of the accused – the same videos the public saw in the media that prompted complaints – we launched an investigation that included reviewing video footage and conducting extensive interviews with witnesses and the owners of pets that were allegedly subjected to the abuse.
Based on the evidence found, after a very thorough investigation, the Society proceeded with charges against the accused. A Crown reviewed the charges and analyzed how the evidence was gathered during that process. We stand behind those charges and advocated for prosecution. We are disappointed to learn that the Crown has chosen to withdraw those charges.
If you wish to voice your concerns to the Crown, you can contact the Ministry of the Attorney General by calling 1-800-518-7901 or emailing, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Connie Mallory, Chief Inspector, Ontario SPCA