Woman gets jail, fine in dog-abuse case

Shawanna Hughes, 37, of Oyster Bay, whose dog

Shawanna Hughes, 37, of Oyster Bay, whose dog had to have a broken leg amputated, was sentenced to 30 days in jail and barred from owning animals for five years, the Nassau District Attorney's office said. (Credit: NCDA)

An Oyster Bay woman whose dog had to have a broken leg amputated was sentenced Thursday to 30 days in jail and barred from owning animals for five years, the Nassau District Attorney's office said.

The sentence for Shawanna Hughes, 37, stems from the untreated wounds of Snowball, a pit-bull mix. She also has a pending felony abuse case over another pit bull puppy, Miss Harper, whose leg was improperly amputated, allegedly by a veterinary aide who also was charged.

Hughes pleaded guilty in March to failing to provide veterinary care from October 2012 through December of that year to Snowball, whose broken leg healed improperly and had to be amputated later. The dog also had paw and tail injuries and an open neck wound that compromised his breathing, court documents said.


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"This defendant left this serious injury untreated for weeks, causing pain and severe disfigurement to a defenseless animal," District Attorney Kathleen Rice said in a news release.

Hughes' attorney said she could not immediately comment.

The dog owner was arrested in March 2013, along with her husband Lee, who is scheduled to be sentenced June 5 on the same charge. He also faces charges in the Miss Harper abuse case.

Under the sentence, Hughes also will have to pay $200 in fines, stay on probation for three years and abide by spot checks of her home to make sure she does not have animals, prosecutors said.

Also, she was given nine months in jail Thursday for violating probation in a separate case, operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs. That sentence will run concurrent with her animal cruelty sentence, prosecutors said.

Snowball has since been adopted. The Nassau SPCA is narrowing down potential adopters for Miss Harper, a case being prosecuted by the state attorney general's office. The dog was rescued last year after her ears and a leg were improperly cut off, authorities said.

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