Jury decision expected today in case of dog shot with arrow
JANESVILLE A Rock County jury is expected to decide today if a Milton man on trial for shooting a dog with a bow and arrow acted in self-defense or unjustly hurt the animal.
Dale A. Moore, 62, Milton, is on trial for misdemeanor mistreating animals and misdemeanor disorderly conduct. The trial began Monday, and jurors are scheduled to hear closing arguments today before deliberating.
James Morke of Milton was walking his Great Pyrenees dog, Casey, on May 21 along railroad tracks off County KK in Lima Township when Casey was shot with an arrow, attorneys said. Casey had to undergo surgery at an animal hospital but survived.
In opening statements, Assistant District Attorney Scott Dirks said Moore told a Rock County sheriff's deputy that the dog wasn't on his property and wasn't barking, growling or attacking him when he shot an arrow into it.
Dirks said Moore treated the dog with cruelty in an unprovoked attack. He said Morke confronted Moore after the shooting, and Moore replied, "Well, you're lucky I didn't use a gun."
Moore's defense attorney, Tod Daniel, said his client has a different side of the story. He said Moore mistakenly thought the dog was a similar-looking animal that had previously accosted his wife and had been a menace in the neighborhood.
Daniel said Morke and his dog had trespassed on railroad property, and the dog was illegally unleashed. He said the dog also became aggressive and approached.
Moore grabbed a blunt arrow—rather than a pointed arrow or a gun—to get the dog off his property, Daniel said.
"All Dale wanted was to get this dog off his property and not menace him, his wife and his dogs, and the dog kept advancing," Daniel said.
After the incident, Morke and his wife, Lynn Morke, lobbied lawmakers to make mistreating animals a felony.
The Morkes also have filed a lawsuit against Moore, asking for money for emotional distress and veterinary bills, according to the civil complaint.
The trial is scheduled to continue at 9 a.m. today.