Friday, December 30, 2016

Idaho: In court, Teresa Davis, 55, pleaded not guilty to five counts of animal cruelty

IDAHO -- A 51-year-old Moscow woman pleaded not guilty to five counts of animal cruelty Wednesday at the Latah County Courthouse.

Teresa Rai Davis is being accused by the city of Moscow of improperly caring for five horses on her property, located on the corner of Polk Street and Rodeo Drive.

“I would like to waive the reading and plead not guilty and ask for a pretrial on Jan. 17,” Davis said from the gallery.

Judge William C. Hamlett, after inviting her to take her seat before the court, did not read the charges, as Davis waived that portion of the proceeding, but he clarified what the penalties could be. The charges are all misdemeanor offenses and each carries up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $5,000.

“You are charged with five counts, that would be a maximum of $25,000 in fines and 30 months,” he said.

Davis was charged Dec. 22 after a lengthy investigation by the Moscow Police Department,

“Teresa R. Davis … did commit animal cruelty by negligently confining her Bay mare in unsanitary conditions and negligently failed to provide adequate sustenance and water,” Moscow City Attorney Erin Tomlin wrote in the criminal complaint.

The same descriptions were repeated twice for Sorrel mares. Two additional charges allege Davis confined a pair of black mares in outdoor conditions with no access to shelter or adequate food or water.

Hamlett also approved a state-requested no-contact order preventing Davis from making contact with the rehabilitation specialists who are caring for the horses.

Davis requested a no-contact order of her own against an unnamed woman who she alleges “has maliciously done criminal acts on my property and assaulted me. Cyber assault.”

Davis said she reported the crimes to Moscow police, but Hamlett suggested she speak with the Latah County Sheriff’s Office to avoid any potential conflict.


Since June 1999, Davis has been charged five times with animals at-large, three times with permitting animals to go without care, twice with cruelty to animals and once with failure to provide adequate fencing.

Davis’ 1999 cruelty to animals charge was brought to a close when she pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of transporting an animal without having it checked by a vet. She was instructed to pay a $150 fine and complete 18 months of probation.

She pleaded guilty to another animal cruelty charge in 2008 and paid a $605 fine.


Of the remainder of the charges, all were dismissed except for one misdemeanor charge of animals at-large for which she was fined $159 and one charge of permitting animals to go without care, which carried a $388 fine.

Tomlin said Wednesday she was unable to comment on the ongoing court case but gave an update of the five horses’ conditions.

“The horses have been receiving continuous care from various equine professionals since they were seized last Tuesday,” she said. “Their rehabilitation is ongoing and it will be for some time.”

Davis’ next court appearance is scheduled for 3:15 p.m. Jan. 17, followed by a pretrial jury conference at 2 p.m. Jan. 23. A jury trial is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. Feb. 3.

Davis declined to comment on the case.

(Moscow-Pullman Daily News - Dec 29, 2016)


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