Target: Judge Sharon Van de Veen
Goal: Ensure that animal abuser Marc-Oliver Labonte is sentenced to jail for his crimes
Surveillance footage at a Calgary dog daycare center caught staff member Marc-Oliver Labonte abusing a five-month-old boxer. The physical abuse led to the puppy coughing and vomiting up blood ten times. The dog’s owner arrived shortly after the abuse was inflicted, saw that her puppy was not well, saw the footage and took her puppy immediately to the vet. What has many in uproar is the fact that this man’s defense lawyer is fighting for probation instead of jail time.
Labonte was working at Chasin’ Tails on September 12, 2012 when surveillance footage caught him abusing the boxer Apollo. The footage shows Labonte throwing Apollo onto the ground numerous times, using his knee to hold the dog on the ground by his neck, shoving him into the trampoline floor for several seconds by his collar and jerking his muzzled head forward. Apollo vomiting blood at least ten times in front of his owner. The injuries were not life-threatening, but were nonetheless serious as the puppy coughed and gagged on his blood at the clinic.
Prosecutor Rosalind Greenwood states that Labonte “bullied the puppy over and over for an hour” and that he seemed to target the puppy for his rambunctious and playful nature. Labonte has since pled guilty to charges of causing the animal pain and suffering, although his defense lawyer insists the crime is out of place for Labonte who has a clean record and is a trusted staff member at Chasin’ Tails. The lawyer claims that Labonte was trying to copy other staff members’ techniques and simply went too far. The lawyer is also fighting for a conditional discharge so Labonte will serve no jail time and will not have a criminal record.
Disciplining a dog should never last an hour and the discipline should never result in the dog vomiting up blood. Labonte should be prosecuted and sent to jail for abusing a client’s beloved pet, especially when he was supposed to be the dog’s caretaker. Tell Judge Sharon Van de Veen to sentence this man to jail.
Dear Judge Van de Veen,
Recently the case of 19-year-old Marc-Oliver Labonte has caught the media’s attention. Surveillance footage captured him severely abusing a five-month-old boxer puppy. The owner was present shortly after the abuse and witnessed her puppy Apollo vomiting blood at least ten times before taking him to a vet.
This kind of abuse is not acceptable. Labonte is an adult, and using his “young” age as an excuse for his actions should be rejected by the court. This man bullied a puppy for an hour and the owner witnessed and can testify to the grisly aftermath. As someone who is supposed to care for dogs Labonte blatantly disregarded the animal’s welfare. I demand that Labonte spend time in jail for his actions as they clearly constitute animal cruelty and abuse.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Morten Skovgaard via Flickr