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Oldham Pleads Not Guilty

Posted on Jun 6, 2007 - 9:13 AM,
Bennington Banner
Article Launched:06/05/2007 06:19:32 AM EDT

Tuesday, June 5
BENNINGTON The following cases were heard in Bennington District Court on Monday:
Catherine Oldham, 63, of Bergruken Lane, Readsboro pleaded not guilty to a charge of cruelty to animals.

According to an affidavit by Vermont State Police Trooper Timothy Newton, police went to Oldham's residence on Jan. 10. Newton said he saw that Oldham was living in a very unsanitary environment. Newton said he had been told that the house was so unsanitary a hired cleaning person had walked out on the job. The cleaning person reportedly claimed the job was too overwhelming and cited health fears.

Newton said that when Oldham opened the door, he was overwhelmed by the smell of animal urine and feces. Newton said the smell lingered with him for 30 minutes after the encounter and made him nauseous.

On March 26, Newton said he returned to the residence. Newton said the residence was heavily soiled with feces and puddles of urine apparently throughout the house. Newton said the entire floor had a thin film of feces on it.

Newton said two puppies, four dogs, three cats and two kittens had been removed from the residence. He also claimed that there were at least two adult cats that he could not catch. According to Newton, subsequent evaluation of the animals by veterinarians revealed that several of the cats and dogs had worms, skin conditions and other medical problems.

- Mike Gleason

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