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German Shepherd rescuer mostly prevails in court

One of the dogs confiscated by Apple Valley Animal Control
Courtesy of Mary Ryan

A court trial began on Wednesday in the Victorville Superior Court in the matter of People v. Mary Ryan. Initially Mary Ryan, founder of German Shepherd Angels Rescue, was accused of 31 counts of animal cruelty. However, she was notified those were dropped but the 27 infractions for “Animals Not Allow” and three for “Disposition of Dead Animal” remained.

Town officials were seen in the hallway of the courthouse “high fiving” after their testimony yesterday, apparently thinking they were successful in convincing Judge John Tomberlin of their unfounded accusations against Ryan.

Today,a fter the one and a half day trial, Judge Tomberlin dismissed 26 of the 30 charges against Ryan. She was convicted of a single infraction of “Animal Not Allowed” and one infraction for each of the three deceased puppies in her wrapped in her freezer awaiting cremation.

Last month, even after she was notified that the criminal charges were dropped, she was visited by two detectives from the Apple Valley Police Department demanding entry into her home without a search warrant. Apparently, the town is trying to convince the District Attorney to file additional charges against her.

Ryan’s next court appearance is for a Writ of Mandate filed on her behalf regarding the actions taken by the town to confiscate her dogs and other property. Even though the matter has not been heard, local rescuers have contacted the undersigned to state that the town turned over Ryan’s dogs this past weekend to German Shepherd Rescue of Las Vegas. Entries on the group’s Facebook page support that accusation but it is not confirmed.

Ryan wanted her dogs back and did not relinquish them. Several Southern California German Shepherd rescues were also willing to take the dogs. It appears the town acted over the weekend to keep their actions concealed as long as possible.

Ryan has filed a $5 million claim against the town for violation of civil rights and due process as well as defamation. The town has been quick to send out press releases when they won brief victories in civil court but so far have not issued a statement about their loss in criminal court. Of the 61 total counts, only four minor infractions were upheld.

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