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Saturday, Jul 1, 2006County: Allegheny
Person of Interest: Anthony Skender
Case Updates: 1 update(s) available
The Chartiers Valley School District superintendent says he will plead not guilty to an animal cruelty citation issued on July 1 by Scott police at the township park.
"That dog wasn't hurt in any way, shape or form," Anthony Skender, 57, of Franklin Park, said yesterday.
According to a police report, an officer was placing a $10 ticket on Mr. Skender's car which was parked illegally, and noticed a dog in the car. The report says the car's windows were open 2 inches, but there was no food or water for the animal in the car, and the outdoor temperature was 85 degrees.
After an hour, police paged the car's owner and issued the citation to Mr. Skender.
He said he had been at the park to attend a graduation party, and had planned to leave the party to pick up his wife, who was returning from a beach vacation, at the airport. He had brought the family pet, a mixed border collie 12 to 13 years old, with him as a surprise for his wife.
Mr. Skender said he had been at the party about 50 minutes, and was about to leave when he learned he was being summoned to his car.
"I had it all timed out so that I could spend half an hour or 45 minutes [at the party] and then pick up my wife. It was not a situation where the dog was being abused, much less mistreated," he said.
Scott Park is off limits to dogs, but it is not clear whether the park is posted.
Mr. Skender came to Chartiers Valley in May 2005 from the Sto-Rox School District. He will appeal the citation before District Justice Gary Zyra, of Scott.
|District Judge Gary Zyra, of Scott, has found Chartiers Valley School District Superintendent Anthony Skender not guilty of animal cruelty in connection with an incident last month in Scott Park.|
Mr. Skender, 57, of Franklin Park, was issued a citation July 1 by Scott Patrolman Bill Scott for leaving his 13-year-old mixed border collie alone in his car for close to an hour while attending a graduation party.
Mr. Skender also was cited $10 for illegal parking. The officer noticed the dog in the car as he was placing the parking ticket on the windshield.
Accompanied by his wife and representing himself Aug. 9, Mr. Skender said he had left the windows rolled down in the car several inches and had given the dog water from his cupped hands.
In an interview after the incident, Mr. Skender said he decided to bring the dog with him as a surprise for his wife after noticing Scott Park's tall, shading trees during another graduation party at the park the night before, which was the first time he had been in the park.
He planned to stay at the party for approximately 30 or 45 minutes and then leave for the airport to pick up his wife.
"I had it all timed out so that I could spend half an hour or 45 minutes [at the party] and then pick up my wife. It was not a situation where the dog was being abused, much less mistreated," Mr. Skender said.
Conditions at the park were different July 1 from the night before. The temperature was 85 degrees, a baseball tournament was in full swing, graduation parties and picnics were taking place and the pool and tennis courts were full, so there were few places to park.
Mr. Skender told Judge Zyra, "If I'm guilty of anything it's trying to do something nice for my wife."
The judge smiled sympathetically and responded that many others would be in trouble if that were a crime.
Mr. Skender's posted $50 surety bond toward a possible $300 fine will be returned.
|Source: Post-Gazette - Aug 24, 2006|
Update posted on Aug 24, 2006 - 12:33PM
- Puttsburgh Post-Gazette - July 6, 2006
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