Arts & Life
Canstar Community News
Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/1/2019 (600 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
A Winnipeg man who stabbed an dog in Winnipeg’s North End last summer will spend another 15 months in jail and have to cough up more than $1,000 to cover the animal’s care.
Alex Genaille, 20, learned his fate in provincial court Jan. 24, after previously pleading guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and a weapons charge.
The seven-year-old mastiff, named Cooter, suffered major injuries to its muzzle after Genaille used a large hunting knife to slash the dog’s face through a fence on the night of Aug. 31, 2018.
Genaille and four others were in a back lane when they passed by the dog, who was behind a six-foot-high wooden fence.
Surveillance camera footage showed Genaille, who was on a bicycle, circled back. He put on a mask and gloves, pulled the knife from a pocket and stabbed the dog through the fence, Crown attorney Alanna Hall said.
The Free Press reviewed an audio transcript of the hearing Monday.
The dog’s owner, Mark Eskow, came home to find Cooter injured, and blood all over his yard.
The dog "had been stabbed so severely that the wound went through his nose and snout and through to his teeth," Hall told Judge Robin Finlayson. While the dog will fully recover, the cost of its treatment was $1,100, court heard.
Police quickly zeroed-in on Genaille as a suspect. They arrested him about two weeks later, after he ran from police who were staking out a home on Boyd Avenue.
He made a full confession and said he was drunk when he stabbed the dog – a claim the Crown disputed, given he was still able to bike around and perform other physical tasks that night.
"Sorry I hit your dog," Genaille wrote in a letter to Eskow police asked him to write, by way of apologizing.
"I love animals. I know that if I was sober I would never hurt a pet or animal," he wrote.
"His remorse is questionable," Hall said, asking for a 30-month prison term.
Genaille lives with major intellectual disabilities, including diagnosed FASD, ADHD and a "borderline" IQ, defence lawyer Greg Hawrysh said. He was made a ward of the child-welfare system at birth and started abusing alcohol at a young age, Finlayson heard.
"His upbringing is horrific," said Finlayson.
The judge declined to endorse the Crown’s recommended sentence, calling it "excessive," saying he still had to factor in prospects for Genaille’s rehabilitation, given his age.
Genaille will be on probation for 18 months following his sentence. He was also convicted of breaching a bail order by drinking after being released to await trial for the attack on the dog.
The Winnipeg Free Press invites you to share your opinion on this story in a letter to the editor. A selection of letters to the editor are published daily.
Letters must include the writer’s full name, address, and a daytime phone number. Letters are edited for length and clarity.