"He who is brave is free."
~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca

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October 3, 2007

Hopefully justice will be a theme this season and this woman will face the punishment she deserves. I think a lot of the Peta propaganda about dog stealing may really be projection about their own terrorist type activities, stealing people's animals (property) because they don't agree with their use or ownership and many times their actions have indicated that they believe animals are 'saved' by killing them. After the Hinkle/Cook travesty1 I can only hope that justice will actually prevail next week and these extremists will be on notice that they cannot violate others' (property) rights with impunity. After that acquittal they may be thinking that no matter how extreme their actions they possess some sort of a get-out-of-felony-charges-free pass. It's my deepest and sincere hope that this will not be the case again.

Southampton County Circuit Court
Criminal Division
Case Number: CR07000258-00
Filed: 07/02/2007
Commenced by: Indictment


Sex: Female Race: White Caucasian
DOB: 07/17/****
Address: CHESAPEAKE VA 23320 4836

Code Section: 18.2-97
Charge Type: Felony

Offense Date: 10/25/2006
Arrest Date: 10/27/2006

10/09/2007 9:30AM Trial


UPDATE: Trial postponed until 1/10/08
(Oddly, you can no longer do a name search and retrieve this case file so good thing I saved the case number here. ;) )

"A motorist who saw one of the women placing the dog in the van testified Tuesday that the scene "didn't look right," so he called Southampton County Sheriff's Deputy J.T. Cooke Jr., an animal control officer for the county. Cooke found the van a few minutes later and discovered his Walker hound in the back.

By the time he found the PETA van, Cooke had received a second call alerting him that a dog that was likely his had been spotted in the area. So when Cooke stopped the van, he asked the driver - Benoit - whether she had just picked up a dog.

According to Cooke's testimony, they had the following conversation:

"No," she told him.

"You didn't just pick up a dog with zeroes on the side and 'JT' on the leg?" replied Cooke, who was in his sheriff's vehicle and uniform.

"Oh, you mean that dog. Yeah, it's in the back," Benoit responded.

Cooke saw that the dog no longer had on its tracking collar and asked Benoit where it was.

"I don't know what you're talking about," she told him.

The tracking collar was found near the side of the road where the dog was picked up. Benjamin (pitchick explains: Benoit's Attorney) said in court that the women had removed it. He said they were right to do so; otherwise they could have been charged with stealing the collar, he argued.

The hound was on its way home before they picked it up, prosecutor Steve Edwards said in his closing argument.

"The one thing that would have made it difficult to get the dog out of the county was left in the ditch," he said, referring to the tracking collar.

"What we have here is a hound that was picked up by an organization from another jurisdiction to do who-knows-what with it," Steve Edwards said."

[1] Viewer discretion is advised! Some of these photos are very graphic! They show the actual crime scene photographs taken when Hinkle and Cook were caught taking animals from control facilities under false pretense of sheltering and saving them only to kill them all in the back of a van and dump their bodies in a supermarket dumpster, weekly. I can't imagine the ongoing outcry and use of such a scene to blanketly denigrate all dogmen if one of them had been found doing such a thing.