Wednesday, September 2, 2015

New Hampshire: Laurinda Miller, 51, owner of animal spa and rescue pleads not guilty to 21 counts of cruelty

NEW HAMPSHIRE -- A local woman has waived arraignment and pleaded not guilty to 21 counts of misdemeanor cruelty to animals.

Represented by Public Defender Mary Weber, Laurinda R. Miller, 51, of 1800 Route 16 in Ossipee, entered the plea last week, which negated her scheduled Sept. 2 arraignment in Ossipee District Court.

A court representative on Monday said Miller’s next court date was not yet set. Miller is free on $2,000 personal recognizance bond and has been ordered to have no animals in her custody “at any time.”

On July 10, after receiving tips with persons familiar with the Sweet Paws Spa & Inn and the Sweet Tails Animal Rescue, both of which are located on the same property where Miller resides, the Ossipee Police Department, accompanied by agents from the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture, executed a search warrant and found 59 dogs and seven cats living in extreme filth as well as being malnourished and dehydrated.


Most of the animals, which are believed to have been rescues, were taken to the Conway Area Humane Society, the New Hampshire Humane Society in Laconia and the Lakes Region Humane Society in Ossipee and subsequently adopted into new homes.

Ossipee Police Sgt. Bob King has previously identified Miller as the owner of the spa and rescue, with Virginia Moore, the executive director of the CAHS, speculating that Miller may have been overwhelmed by the demands of operating the latter facility.

In court documents, Miller said Sweet Paws had been her employer for nine years and that she had lived in New Hampshire for 30 years. In her request for a public defender, Miller wrote that she was currently unemployed and that the property where she lived was in the process of foreclosure.

(Union Leader - Sept 1, 2015)


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