Resident granted continuance in animal cruelty trial
Appearing to change her mind halfway through the process, Peabody resident Jeannie Gervais got a continuance on an animal cruelty trial last week in Peabody municipal court.
After meeting with prosecutor Mike Cleary, Gervais told judge Brad Jantz that she did not wish to go to trial and would like a plea negotiation.
Gervais sat down and waited until her case was called. At that time, she said her lawyer, Steve Johnston of Newton, told her to plead not guilty.
Johnson, however, had not entered an appearance in the case.
Gervais told Jantz she didn’t realize it was a trial. She thought it was a continuance.
“I made it very clear,” Jantz said.
She became emotional and asked if pleading no contest would give her more time to get her horse back.
She was also concerned what could happen to her other animals.
“You can’t take away any more of my animals,” she said.
Jantz replied they don’t just take animals from owners, only if there are signs of neglect.
At that point, Gervais jumped to another issue — not having tags and immunization records on one of her dogs.
Looking directly at Peabody police chief Bruce Burke, she raised her voice and said, “My dogs are fine, Burke.”
She agreed to get the dog tagged.
Jantz continued the trial to 6 p.m. March 27 in Peabody municipal court.
“Let me make myself clear,” he said. “March 27 will be a trial. Do you understand?”
Gervais said she understood.
Last modified Feb. 21, 2019