Vermont v. SheperdAnnotate this Case
In this case involving multiple counts of cruelty to animals, defendant Randall Shepard appealed the trial court’s denial of a motion to suppress and its order imposing costs for the care of forfeited animals. With respect to the suppression motion, defendant argued that: (1) the warrant was unconstitutionally broad in allowing the search for and seizure of any animal found at defendant’s home; (2) there was no veterinarian present during execution of the warrant as required by statute; (3) and the court improperly placed the burden of proof on defendant at the suppression hearing. Defendant also argued that the court abused its discretion in ordering him to repay costs incurred in housing the forfeited animals. After review, the Vermont Supreme Court affirmed the trial court’s rulings on the first three issues, but reversed and remanded for reconsideration of the court’s order regarding statutory costs of care for the forfeited animals.