Friday, January 2, 2009

Woman found guilty of starving dog to death

A Peoria woman was found guilty Dec. 23 of the deliberate starvation of a female pit bull.

Lakisha Smith, 36, was indicted July 3 on one count of cruelty to animals, a class six felony. The jury returned its verdict Dec. 15.

According to a Peoria Police probable cause statement, on Nov. 10, 2006, Smith was found to have a dead dog in her backyard. “D-Bo” was a female pit bull that was completely emaciated and had no body fat anywhere on its body. The dog was also found to have bleeding ulcers. The dogs bones were protruding in every area and her eye sockets were completely sunken in.

In courtroom testimony, Smith admitted the dog was not eating, but said she was trying to feed it. However, a veterinarian pathologist indicated that unless a dog has an underlying illness, it will eat. The dog had no underlying illness. Grass and forage were found to be the only contents of the dog's stomach.

Smith will be sentenced Jan. 14, 2009 before Judge Janet Barton.

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