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Spokane Valley woman allegedly killed squirrels with electric fence to protect tree

According to SCRAPS, Mary Franks referred to the dead squirrels as "her trophies." She had set up an electric fence to protect a walnut tree.
Credit: sallynewcomb

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. — The Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Service has asked for a Spokane Valley woman to face felony animal cruelty charges for killing squirrels in her yard using an electric fence that caused "undue suffering."

According to SCRAPS Field Operations Manager Ashley Proszek, the group was notified on Oct. 10, 2018, that there were multiple dead squirrels around an electric fence protecting a walnut tree in Franks' yard.

Proszek said that the report alleged that Franks referred to the dead squirrels as "her trophies."

While she was using the fence to protect her walnut tree, Franks was asked why she didn't use a lower voltage, Proszek said. 

Franks allegedly responded that she wanted to kill the squirrels, Proszek said.

This has caused SCRAPS to ask the Spokane County Prosecutor's Office for nine charges of first-degree animal cruelty due to the nine dead squirrels photographed at the fence, Proszek said.

Due to the squirrels dying by electrocution and not a quick, more painless method, a first-degree felony charge was recommended by SCRAPS, according to Proszek.

First-degree animal cruelty occurs when someone "killed an animal by means that cause undue suffering," Proszek said.

According to SCRAPS, the Spokane County Prosecutor's Office is considering the charges and that a pretrial hearing date has been set for May 1.

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