Silver Lake man admits he shot a dog on his land. A judge will decide how much he'll pay.
After a shotgun blast blinded Dian Workman's dog, Lucy, Workman said Thursday she initially found herself needing to get Lucy out of corners in their home and to carry her inside when she relieved herself outdoors.
But Lucy has since learned to cope more effectively with her situation, Workman said at a sentencing hearing for John C. Stover, who pleaded guilty Sept. 22 to misdemeanor cruelty to animals in the case.
"Lucy is doing pretty good," Workman wrote last September on the "Justice For Lucy" Facebook page she maintains. "She is a great house dog. She still shakes or jumps before we pet her."
A restitution amount was discussed but not decided at Thursday's sentencing hearing for Stover, 61.
Shawnee County District Judge Rachel Pickering heard testimony from Workman and arguments over how much restitution she should order Stover to pay.
Pickering then continued that hearing until 2 p.m. Feb. 22, saying she planned to research the information she'd been provided.
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Sides disagree over restitution amount
Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay asked Thursday that Stover be ordered to pay restitution totaling $12,831.54.
Stover's attorney, James Heathman, suggested the court order Stover to pay half that, in which case he said Workman and her husband, Mark Workman, could still pursue a civil suit against him if they wished.
Heathman described Stover as being a "good person" and a "simple person."
"There was no evil-mindedness," he said. "There was no heinous intent on the part of Mr. Stover."
Kagay contends Stover fired a shotgun blast on Aug. 6, 2020, that struck Lucy, an Irish setter who had come onto his property at 5329 N.W. Hunter Road, Silver Lake. Lucy was then 18 months old.
Kagay said Lucy hid under a shed before being struck by several pellets from a shotgun fired by Stover.
Kagay's office in 2020 charged Stover with felony cruelty to animals, alleging he wounded the dog knowingly, unlawfully and maliciously.
Stover was set to go to trial in August 2021, but a mistrial was called after a juror suffered injuries in a traffic crash.
Stover then pleaded guilty Sept. 22 to a Class A misdemeanor count of cruelty to animals while saying he wounded the dog knowingly and unlawfully, but not maliciously.
The plea was made with the understanding that Stover would pay some restitution, Pickering said Thursday.
Workmans paid $600 for Lucy, who was a hunting dog
Lucy, who turned 4 years old Jan. 11, wasn't allowed to be in the courtroom for Thursday's hearing, Dian Workman said.
The Workmans paid $600 to acquire Lucy, who was brought here from Pennsylvania as a puppy, Dian Workman testified at Thursday's hearing.
The two sides agreed on some matters Thursday and disagreed on others, including the value of the training Lucy received from Mark Workman.
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Dian Workman said her husband trained Lucy to perform as a hunting dog and stay within her boundaries.
Heathman replied, "She wasn't within her boundaries when she got hurt, though, was she?"
Contact Tim Hrenchir at email@example.com or 785-213-5934.
This article originally appeared on Topeka Capital-Journal: Restitution amount discussed in shooting of dog blinded at Silver Lake