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Posted on: November 29, 2018

DA Hoovler Presented With “Award of Excellence” From the New York State Humane Association

District Attorney

Orange County News
For Immediate Release                                                                           Contact: Christopher Borek
November 28, 2018                                                                           845.291.3276, 845.238.4245c


District Attorney Hoovler Presented With “Award of Excellence” From 

the New York State Humane Association 

 

Orange County District Attorney’s Office Recognized for Excellence

 in the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty Cases

 

Orange County District Attorney David M. Hoovler was presented with an “Award of Excellence” by the New York State Humane Association on Wednesday, November 28, 2018, at the District Attorney’s Office. Patricia Valusek, President of the New York State Humane Association, stated that the award was presented to recognize “the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, headed by District Attorney David Hoovler, for its commitment to finding justice for nine horses who died of starvation, on the Ryan farm in Goshen,” and also stated that “The Orange County District Attorney’s Office vigorous and precedent-setting prosecution was supported by well-researched case law and resulted in guilty verdicts on all counts.”

On July 24, 2018, Jeanne Ryan, a former New York City Police Officer who had retired on a disability pension, was found guilty after a bench trial before Orange County Court Judge Robert H. Freehill of ten felony counts of Aggravated Cruelty to Animals. Ryan was also convicted of ten misdemeanor counts of Overdriving, Torturing, and Injuring Animals, for underfeeding the same animals. On September 6, 2018, Ryan was sentenced to the maximum sentence allowed under the law for nine of the ten felony counts of Aggravated Cruelty to Animals, and for all ten counts of Overdriving, Torturing, and Injuring Animals. Consistent with the District Attorney’s recommendation, Ryan was sentenced to a conditional discharge on one of the felony counts, to help ensure that she is prevented from owning animals during the pendency of any appeals on the case. Judge Freehill also issued an order prohibiting Ryan from owning or possessing animals for fifteen years. An equine rescue society that took possession of the surviving horse received a restitution order for expenses incurred for their care of the starving horse. Ryan’s conviction required her to register with the Orange County Animal Abuse Registry, which will prevent her from owning animals in Orange County.

District Attorney Hoovler highly commended Chief Assistant District Attorney Christopher Borek and Assistant District Attorney Anika Mohammed for their prosecution of the Ryan case.

During the presentation of the award, officials from the New York State Humane Association noted District Attorney Hoovler’s long-standing commitment to the prosecution of animal abuse cases, including his ground-breaking prosecution in 2004 as an Orange County Assistant District Attorney of James Frichionne, who had run a dog-fighting operation in Westtown, New York. Frichionne was sentenced to two to seven years in prison on that case, and over the years Hoovler has been sought out by prosecutors around the country for advice on prosecuting dog-fighting cases.

 “I thank the New York State Humane Association for their commitment to fighting animal cruelty, and for recognizing with this award my office’s continuing commitment to prosecuting animal abuse,” said District Attorney Hoovler. “In my opinion, the current law does not provide adequate punishment for instances of Aggravated Cruelty to Animals, such as those proven in the case against Jeanne Ryan. My office will continue to appropriately prosecute animal abuse cases, including providing whatever resources are necessary to ensure the effective prosecution of these cases. The appropriate prosecution of these cases depends on many factors, including how egregious the abuse was; whether the defendant was acting intentionally, recklessly or negligently; and whether the animals were being kept as pets or for agricultural purposes. I am grateful to all our law enforcement partners, including the Hudson Valley Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and for all the volunteer groups such as the New York State Humane Association and equine rescue societies for sharing their advice and expertise as we investigate and prosecute animal abuse cases.”

The New York Humane Association also issued a press release concerning the award.


HoovlerAnimal1

Patricia Valusek, President of the New York State Humane Association, and District Attorney David M. Hoovler.

HoovlerAnimal2


Left to Right: Marc Kissell, Chief of Department of Humane Law Enforcement; Patricia Valusek, President of the New York State Humane Association; District Attorney David M. Hoovler; Chief Assistant District Attorney Christopher Borek; and Dr. Harold Hovel, Ph.D. Chairman of the Board of the New York State Humane Association.




New York State Humane Association Press Release



November 28, 2018                        


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


CONTACT PERSONS:   Patricia Valusek, NYSHA President:  (845) 532-2756

                                         Orange County DA’s Office, CADA Chris Borek (845) 291-3276


Representatives of the Board of the New York State Humane Association, headquartered in Kingston, will

present an Award of Excellence to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, headed by District

Attorney David Hoovler, for its commitment to finding justice for nine horses who died of starvation,

and for one who barely survived, on the Ryan farm in Goshen. The award will be presented on Wednesday, November 28, at 2:00 p.m. at the District Attorney’s Office in Goshen.


After the Grand Jury indicted Jeanne Ryan on 10 felony counts of Aggravated Cruelty to Animals and 10

Misdemeanor counts of Overdriving, Torturing and Injuring Animals, Chief Assistant District Attorney

Christopher Borek and Assistant District Attorney Anika Mohammed prosecuted the case in Orange

County Court in a bench trial before the Honorable Judge Robert H. Freehill.  The Orange County District

Attorney’s Office vigorous and precedent-setting prosecution was supported by well-researched case law and resulted in guilty verdicts on all counts.


The District Attorney’s expert appeals staff is prepared to address any appeal that might be raised, however,

no appeal has yet been filed. As a result of the convictions, Ryan is serving a two-year sentence, which is

the most that can be served under the law, in the Orange County jail, and upon release Ryan must pay

restitution for the costs of care and rehabilitation that was incurred for the surviving horse until Ryan

relinquished ownership.


Ryan’s name will also be placed on the Orange County animal abuse registry, and in addition, she is under

court order not to own any animals for fifteen years.


The New York State Humane Association in partnership with the NYS Department of Criminal Justice

Services conducted animal cruelty investigation workshops for police and humane investigators

throughout the state for eighteen years, several workshops were conducted in conjunction with the Orange

County District Attorney’s Office and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.


                                                                      

The New York State Humane Association was formed in 1900 and incorporated in 1925. Our guiding principle is to promote compassion to animals and prevent animal cruelty, through education about and enforcement of the NYS anti-cruelty laws.
The NYSHA is not a department of nor funded by New York State or any other government agency.

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