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Hoskins awaits sentencing for animal cruelty

WBFO News file photo

Horse owner Beth Hoskins faces up to two years in jail when sentenced Thursday on dozens of animal cruelty convictions.  

Hoskins was in Aurora Town Court Monday trying to reverse her convictions and make the case go away.

Town Justice Douglas Marky refused and ordered the sentencing to go ahead.

Defense Lawyer Thomas Eoannou said the attempt had to be made to preserve her legal position for the planned appeal.

"I think the court gave a very balanced decision. It agreed with the defense that no restitution would be paid, ordered by this court," said Eoannou.  "That the letter from the SPCA was not properly an impact victim letter."

WBFO News file photo
One of the horses seized by the SPCA.

Hoskins was found guilty of misdemeanor cruelty to 52-horses and acquitted on 22 others. She has custody of 24 of the horses and the SPCA has the other 25.

Besides the criminal case, the SPCA has lawyer Ralph Lorigo representing it in seeking to be paid for care of the horses in the nearly four-years the case has dragged on.

"The SPCA continues to monitor the horses that are in Miss Hoskins' possession. They are monitored on a regular basis and we continue to find violations of caring for those animals during the monitoring. She has, though, responded to most of those and corrects the violations. But, it's our belief that without the monitoring system those horses would be in much worse condition," said Lorigo.

The SPCA said Hoskins is nearly $300,000 behind in paying the bills for the society's care of the horses.

Three of the horses involved in the case have died, two before the 13-and-a-half month criminal trial.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.