Mexico Woman Pleads Guilty to Animal Abuse in Boone County Courtroom
A Mexico woman has pleaded guilty to animal abuse in a Boone County Courtroom this morning (Friday).
26 year old Taylor Stout plead guilty to the class A misdemeanor.
Judge Kevin Crane sentenced Stout to 1 year in the Boone County Jail with suspended execution of sentence and was placed on 2 years of supervised probation.
The conditions of probation include: 2 days shock detention in the Boone County Jail, restitution of $270 paid to the victims, 200 hours community service at a minimum 8 hours per month.
Ms. Stout is ordered not to work in a field associated with animals or animal care, and may not possess additional pets or animals beyond her current pets.
The case was heard in Boone County after a change of venue from Audrain County.
In July 2019, Stout was employed at a Mexico dog groomer, and during a grooming session with Petunia, a Yorkie dog, grabbed and slammed the dog on a grooming table multiple times.
Petunia was injured but survived.
Another co-defendant James Johns was present at the time and also harmed the animal.
Audrain County Prosecuting Attorney Jacob Shellabarger says “Animal abuse cases result in a lot of passion and emotion, and this case is no exception.”
“She accepted responsibility and was sentenced to a firm sentence that involves intensive supervision, significant community service, restrictions on her activities, and jail all as sanctions.”
“If Ms. Stout violates any one condition of her probation, the Court may sentence her to serve up to the full year in jail. Today’s sentencing is an affirmation that if you hurt animals, you will be held accountable.”
Judge Crane said it best: “Ms. Stout, you messed with the wrong dog… these family members care deeply about this dog.”
“Animal abuse is a misdemeanor under Missouri law unless the State can show it was a deliberate act, with purpose or intention to cause injury or suffering by torture to the animal,” Shellabarger said.
“In this case, the video evidence shows a series of abusive actions taken in a short period of time. The video is shocking, and shows callous and violent act.”
“There’s no excuse for what happened – but the crime fits the facts. After full review of the evidence, the State couldn’t prove those two words, by torture, beyond a reasonable doubt – so the case remains a misdemeanor based on the way the law’s written.”
“This case has caused strong reactions across our community, but cases have to be resolved within the bounds of existing law,” Shellabarger said.
“The sentence in this case was reached in consultation with the families involved and after their input and agreement. The court heard from the families and from those affected by this crime. This result balances punishment with restitution.”