Woman allegedly attacked SPCA officer during raid at Digby County home
By BRIAN MEDEL Yarmouth Bureau
Tue. Dec 11 - 5:53 AM
Gail Ruth Benoit is now charged with assaulting an SPCA officer, obstructing police and damaging government property. She also faces animal cruelty charges. (BRIAN MEDEL / Yarmouth Bureau)
DIGBY — A Digby County woman accused of failing to care for several puppies at her home is now also charged with assaulting an SPCA officer, obstructing police and damaging government property.
Court documents allege Gail Ruth Benoit, 38, assaulted SPCA special constable Nancy Noel on Oct. 24.
Ms. Benoit and her common-law husband, Dana Bailey, were in court Monday to get their case adjourned until February so their lawyer can have more time to examine the Crown’s evidence. The couple also face a number of animal cruelty charges stemming from raids on their Roxville home in October, when SPCA staff armed with a search warrant seized a total of 10 puppies over two days.
SPCA officials confirmed in October that tests done on the animals revealed they had an intestinal virus that could be linked to unsanitary living conditions.
RCMP officers ended up arresting Ms. Benoit on the second day of the seizures, Oct. 26, and removed her from her bungalow. They placed her in the back of a police car where she rocked back and forth and shouted obscenities while the puppies were collected. Mr. Bailey was not home.
On Monday, the couple left Digby provincial court by a side door.
Ms. Benoit walked to her mini-van behind her husband, making occasional rude gestures.
"The truth will be known in the end," she said before jumping into the van.
Several people have contacted the Nova Scotia SPCA to say they’ve purchased puppies from Ms. Benoit, and some complaints have been lodged, said SPCA special constable Sean Kelly, who was in court Monday.