BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - After three years of waiting, a woman accused of animal cruelty may finally find out her punishment. Beth Hoskins was convicted of 52 counts of animal cruelty this past summer. Thursday a judge could sentence her to probation or up to two years behind bars.
This soap opera-like trial has seen an assistant district attorney lose his job and millions spent on legal fees and to care for the horses that were taken from Hoskins. It took three years to reach a verdict in this case, from an SPCA raid at Beth Hoskins’ farm on Emery Road, to a conviction on 52 counts of animal cruelty. Some of the horses had visible scars and other injuries.
Throughout the legal ordeal, she spent over $750,000 in legal fees and maintained she is innocent.
In July, Hoskins said, “I'm going to continue to fight for my rights as an American citizen and I will continue to see what avenues are available to us.” News 4’s George Richert asked her, “Do you want the horses back?” Hoskins replied, “Absolutely.”
Prosecutors are seeking jail time and Hoskins could spend up to two years behind bars. The SPCA, which has been caring for many of the horses, is seeking money from Hoskins to cover what’s been paid out for the horses’ care.
In November, 2010, Erie County SPCA Executive Director Barbara Carr said, “In terms of a cruelty case, by far this is the most costly case in the history of the SPCA, in the 143 years that we've taken on.”
Those costs for animal care have reportedly passed the $1.3 million mark. Sentencing is set for Thursday afternoon in Aurora Town Court.
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