- Idaho, USA -
On May 16, 2023, Magistrate Judge Victoria Olds sentenced 82-years-old CHRISTINE B. LALIBERTE in relation to a hoarding case where twenty-five (25) Great Danes were rescued from her home in 2022 and cared for by the Idaho Animal Rescue Network.
LALIBERTE pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty and was sentenced to 180 days in jail with 170 days suspended. LALIBERTE will also serve 10 days of community service in lieu of 10 days jail and 24 months of supervised probation. LALIBERTE won’t be allowed to have dogs during her brief probation and was ordered to pay $1,229.50 in fees and $500 restitution to the Idaho Animal Rescue Network.
According to Idaho State Journal, LALIBERTE was also ordered “to write apology letters to various groups, veterinarians, law enforcement and volunteers who assisted in the care of the Great Danes.”
On July 27, 2022, Idaho Animal Rescue Network was called to a property on 1963 Tammany Creek Road in Lewiston about a hoarding situation involving thirteen Great Danes. The dogs’ guardian, LALIBERTE’s daughter, had recently passed away.
IARN reported that the dogs were found to be living in filth inside a garage. The nonprofit also reported that the dogs had minor injuries, they were not vaccinated, they had not been spayed/neutered, and some female dogs were possibly pregnant.
The following day, volunteers along with the Nez Perce County Prosecutors Office assisted with removing thirteen Great Danes from the property. Officials made contact with LALIBERTE who decided to surrender her rights to them.
Big Country News reports that IARN Director Jenna Redheart had said: “The dogs are not out of trouble yet. We are combating heat exhaustion, medical issues, fleas, sores, ammonia exposure, and weight loss. They have a long road ahead of them, but I’m confident they will make a great recovery.”
On August 3, 2022, the Nez Perce County Sheriff's Office executed a search warrant at the Lewiston home and with the assistance of the Lewiston Fire Department, twelve more Great Danes were removed bringing the total number to twenty-five.
Some of the newly rescued dogs were taken to Riverview Animal Clinic and Southway Veterinary Clinic to treat their injuries.
In a press release of August 4, 2022, the Nez Perce County Sheriff's Office announced that LALIBERTE had been charged with twelve counts of animal cruelty.
According to Idaho State Journal, “One of the dogs, Andy, the ‘patriarch’ of the group, died of a medical issue shortly after being rescued.” Another Voiceless Victim, named Riley, died in February 2023.
As reported by Idaho State Journal, Judge Olds told LALIBERTE: “This state and this court has shown you more compassion than you showed those animals, but you also suffered, so I am taking that into account. Do not question that if you don’t comply for one second there won’t be consequences.”
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