Daniel M. York

Jury to decide if man justified in shooting two dogs

Mundy Township, MI

June 12, 2006

Daniel M York, 20, was ordered to stand trial by Central District Judge Christopher R. Odette after a preliminary examination on Tuesday, August 1st.  The Mundy Township man is charged with shooting two dogs on his property and injuring another.  York will be arraigned August 14th in Circuit Court.

York is charged with two felony counts of killing/torturing animals in the June 12th killing of Christopher, a 12-year old Collie mix breed and injuring Paws, an 11-month old Labrador Retriever.  The 4-year felony carries penalties of up to a $5,000 fine, 500 hours of community service, the cost of veterinary care and being banned from owning pets.

The animals belong to Amy L Goetz who stated the dogs got out of her Grand Blanc Road residence when a guest left a door ajar and a third dog was able to open it fully.  Goetz stated she had lived in the neighborhood only since December.

Goetz stated both dogs were taken to a vet, but the older dog which had a bad leg and sustained internal injuries from being shot, died. Paws has recovered but the bullet is still lodged in him.

Mundy Township Deputy Police Chief Thomas Melrose and Chief David Guigear testified during the preliminary examination. Melrose stated they spoke to York who initially admitted shooting only one dog, saying it came at him and his mother’s small dog aggressively.  He stated he went inside, grabbed a .22-caliber rifle and shot the dog.  Guigear testified that York later told him he also shot the other dog.

York’s attorney, Roy Hodge stated the case should be dismissed because homeowners have a right to protect their property.  An intern Genesee County Prosecutor countered that there was no evidence the dogs were ever aggressive and York had other options – to call Animal Control or police or go inside the home with the little dog. 

A jury will decide if there was just cause for York to shoot the two animals.

Update 9/28/06:

York plead guilty to two counts of killing/torturing animals.

Update 11/1/06:

York was sentenced to 3 years probation, 182 days in jail, 200 hours of community service and was banned from owning or being near animals through his probation term.  He was also ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluation and to pay the court costs along with fines and restitution to the dog's owner and for the medical treatment for the surviving dog.

Reference:

The Flint Journal

The Genesee County Prosecutor's Office