Dog owner fined for pound break-in
A MAN who broke into the Warwick dog pound to liberate his beloved Rhodesian ridgeback – described in court as being like a child to him – has been fined $750 in the District Court.
Alex Michael Costa appeared before Judge Tutt on Thursday and pleaded guilty to breaking and entering and stealing.
The court was told the 24-year-old Costa’s cherished hound had escaped from his Warwick property several times last year and had been apprehended by Southern Downs Regional Council animal control officers.
On July 11, after the dog had again been impounded, Costa fronted the counter of the council administration centre and was incensed when told it would cost him $250 to release the dog.
The release fee for a first impoundment is $30, but goes up for repeat offences.
Costa told council staff he would “get a pair of bolt-cutters and get the dog out” himself, but was told this was “not a good idea”.
Costa declined to take the sage advice, opting to go to the pound on July 14 and forcing entry.
Council staff discovered the dog gone the next day and advised police, who located Costa’s canine at his residence several days later.
Defence counsel for Costa told the court the dog was “like a first-born child to my client” and that Costa had made full admissions to police, telling them he “just wanted his dog back”.
Judge Tutt suggested to Costa his dog had exhibited “recidivist behaviour in constantly escaping from your property” and had earlier wryly observed that had the animal been “obedient” Costa may not have been forced to break into the pound in the first place.
No conviction was recorded against Costa.