Case Snapshot
Case ID: 20017
Classification: Neglect / Abandonment
Animal: cat, dog (non pit-bull)
More cases in Santa Rosa County, FL
More cases in FL
Login to Watch this Case

New features are coming soon. Login with Facebook to get an early start and help us test them out!

Prosecutor(s): Jason English
Judge(s): John Simon

For more information about the Interactive Animal Cruelty Maps, see the map notes.

Tuesday, Nov 6, 2012

County: Santa Rosa

Charges: Felony CTA
Disposition: Convicted

Defendant/Suspect: Toni A. Phelps

Toni A. Phelps, who left three dogs and three cats to die when her Navarre-area home was foreclosed on in 2012, will serve prison time and 10 years probation for cruelty to animals.

She will also serve 500 hours of community service, undergo a mental health exam and be allowed no contact with animals, a news release from the First Judicial Circuit State Attorney's Office said.

Phelps' decision to plead guilty to the court, as opposed to reaching an agreement with the State Attorneys Office, proved costly, said Assistant State Attorney Jason English, who prosecuted the case.

"She got more than what we were asking for," English said. "The judge structured the sentence so that she'd serve two consecutive five year probations, for a total of 10 years probation."

Judge John Simon ordered the lengthy probation along with a 12.1 month term of incarceration. Because the sentence exceeds one year, Phelps will be sent to a state prison facility to serve it, English said.

According to news accounts of the Nov. 6 2012 discovery, animal remains, feces and fur were found inside the Winding Shore Drive home alongside bags of dog food that had been torn open and consumed. The dogs and cats also ate furniture and garbage as the dogs and cats foraged to stay alive.

Phelps was arrested Nov. 9, 2012 on felony charges of cruelty to animals and misdemeanor charges of animal abandonment and creating a public nuisance.

English said the State Attorneys Office has been seeking "a year and a day" sentences in part to help lessen the circuit's county jails' burden of housing inmates.

Spending even a couple of months in a state prison also carries a "stigma" that may serve as a deterrent to criminal activity, he said.

"I think justice was served," English said.


« FL State Animal Cruelty Map
« More cases in Santa Rosa County, FL

Note: Classifications and other fields should not be used to determine what specific charges the suspect is facing or was convicted of - they are for research and statistical purposes only. The case report and subsequent updates outline the specific charges. Charges referenced in the original case report may be modified throughout the course of the investigation or trial, so case updates, when available, should always be considered the most accurate reflection of charges.

For more information regarding classifications and usage of this database, please visit the database notes and disclaimer.