Judge pushes sentencing in animal cruelty case - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Judge pushes sentencing in animal cruelty case

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MILFORD, CT (WFSB) -

The former head of an animal rescue group, who was previously convicted twice on animal cruelty charges, faced a judge again on Tuesday.

The case of Fred Acker's goes back to 2012 when he brought a number of dogs to a kennel in Milford. He was convicted of animal cruelty there, and then later in Bethlehem.

On Tuesday, Acker was supposed to be sentenced on the Milford case. The judge put off handing down the sentence and said she wanted a little more time to go over everything she heard on Tuesday afternoon.

Acker didn't want to say anything on his way out Milford superior court, but he said plenty inside.

"I made a horrible, terrible, mistake,” Acker said.

Acker heads up the private rescue group known as the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Connecticut. He was in court on Tuesday making one final pitch as to why he should avoid jail time.

"I can assure you, the incidents of 2012, which I feel were a glitch and I feel what was a very strong reprimand and that's why all these people are here with my today,” Acker said. “I've done phenomenal things for animals and I want to continue."

The Milford Case Centers on a conviction for animal cruelty after Acker was neglecting a number of dogs he sent to Who's Your Doggie Kennel.   

He then brought the dogs to Bethlehem, where in November of 2012. The town seized 63 dogs and said Acker was keeping them in conditions that were too cold.

“That's why we seized the animals in Bethlehem, that's why they had the case here,” Bethlehem Animal Control Officer Judy Umstead said. “You cannot tell me, that's you're saving animals and putting them into horrific conditions."

Umstead said while Acker was convicted on 15 counts of animal cruelty in her case, he was spared jail time. That's why Umstead, at Milford Superior Court on Tuesday, said a message needs to be sent.

"How do you get convicted twice of animal cruelty? You've got to show this because there are other people out there who will do the same thing and they figure I'll get off of it like he did,” Umstead said.

The judge continued the sentencing, for one week, at which she'll announce her decision.

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