Samantha Martin, a 24-year-old Baxter resident, is in custody after allegedly spray-painting "Killers" and "U Kill" on a low-kill animal shelter in Brainerd.
In addition to vandalizing the Heartland Animal Rescue Team facility, Martin released all the dogs in the shelter's impound area, police say. The incident occurred about 1 a.m. Tuesday morning.
All of the released dogs have since been returned to the shelter by police and HART staff.
[jump] According to its website, HART does everything it can to place every "adoptable" animal housed at the shelter. But in some cases -- if an animal is sick, aggressive, or suffering due to severe kennel stress, for instance -- staff opts for euthanization.
As an article on HART's website notes:
There are many homeless pets out there and keeping pets in the shelter who may never be adopted are simply taking up space that adoptable pets could be placed in. Sick pets cost money to treat and money isn't something that can be just thrown around at shelters. It really does sound cruel to doom one pet to death in exchange for another. In reality, what else are they to do?Martin, apparently, is unsympathetic to such arguments, presumably in the belief that even one euthanization is too much. And if she's found guilty of the crimes she allegedly committed, she may have a good deal of time to reflect further on the injustice of animal euthanization behind bars.
She faces charges of third-degree burglary and first-degree property damage. Both charges carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.