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Sunday, Jun 12, 2011County: Tompkins
Charges: Misdemeanor, Felony Non-CTA
» Damien J. Landon
» John P. Sterle
Two Lansing teenagers are facing felony and misdemeanor charges of criminal mischief and animal cruelty after a deer and a cow were shot on two separate farms.
Damien J. Landon, 18, and John P. Sterle, 17, were arrested following an investigation by the New York State Police. They are accused of firing a Braztech Remington .223-caliber rifle to shoot a deer on June 10 on Cook's Farm property. Two days later, police say the two shot a cow, which belonged to Reeves Brothers Farm, police said.
Edward Reeves, co-owner of Reeves Brothers Farm in Lansing, said when he got to her, the pregnant cow was on her side and it appeared she wouldn't live long, he said.
"What happened was, when they shot her, the bullet went in behind her back leg and broke her spine," Reeves said. Before the cow was euthanized, she gave birth to a calf, which is now bottle fed.
The cow, about 7 years old and used for breeding, was butchered to find the bullet to help with the investigation, Reeves said.
Landon recently visited the farm with his mother, Reeves said.
"I said, 'There's the cow over there, lying on the ground paralyzed. Go look at it,'" he said. "I asked him what his motive was and he wouldn't even look at me."
Nothing like this has ever happened to Reeves before, he said.
Landon and Sterle are scheduled to be arraigned in the Town of Lansing Court on Tuesday. They face one felony count of criminal mischief, based on the $1,400 value of the cow. They also face seven misdemeanor charges each, including illegal hunting, illegal discharge of a firearm and animal cruelty.
"The cow had to be euthanized, which indicates a cruelty to animals charge," said Trooper Paul Turo, who conducted the investigation.
No motive for the shootings was known. The ownership of the gun is also unknown, although it is legal, Turo said.
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