(WBEN) More than two years after SPCA officials seized over 70 horses at her farm in East Aurora, Beth Hoskins is going to trial today facing animal cruelty charges.
After years of motions and a change in attornies, Hoskins goes on trial in Aurora Town court today, facing 74 counts of animal cruelty. Charges related to the seizure of approximately 50 cats has since been dropped.
Since the March 2010 seizure at her farm, one of the horses died in SPCA care, 40 of the horses have been returned to her and a seperate court proceeding is underway to determine whether she is fit to care for the others. A seperate proceeding will decide whether she owes the agency over $350,000 for the foster care they provided he horses while awaiting trial.
The SPCA says the animals were found at her Emery Road farm in stalls that were deep with manure, many with hoof damage and malnourishment.
Hoskins has claimed that she is the victim of an overzealous SPCA, tipped to her by malicious whistleblower, acting in concert with an abusive ex-husband.
The non jury trial before Aurora Town Justice Douglas Marky beginsthis afternoon