Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Did Gail Benoit pose as a dog sitter to steal someone's dogs?
If this story is true - I have said it before, I really wish this lady would use her very obvious unimaginable sales skills for good rather then evil. Can you imagine the things she could do if she worked for some non profit group instead of peddling the death and sadness that she's been doing for the last 20 years.
Read the below stories and video links for more info on the current story - there is hopefully going to be some more disclosure - and perhaps charges later today.
Woman thinks pets were dognapped
Police probe report of theft
Craft said she needed a place to board her dogs temporarily while she studied accounting and worked full time. She found a place last November through an online site.
Craft said she was later convinced, based on photos she has seen, that the person to whom she entrusted her precious dogs — dogs she hasn’t seen since — was Gail Benoit.
“I guess it was Gail Benoit, but she told me her name was Ashley,” Craft said.
“She didn’t actually tell me her last name. She emailed me and I’m not really positive what her last name came up (as).
“I think she said Bent.”
The arrangement was that the dogs would be cared for over a period of a month or so.
Craft and her father drove the dogs from Saint John to a home in Waverley.
“That’s where she was supposed to babysit (the dogs), at her place,” Craft said.
“I kept checking on them and saying, ‘Oh, I miss them so much, how are they doing?’ and she said, ‘Oh, they’re doing great. My husband loves them.’”
At first, the dog sitter replied by email. Then the messages stopped.
“She disconnected her phone,” Craft said.
Her father went to the home a couple of times but was unable to find anyone there, she said.
Craft said someone then warned her the woman could have been Benoit and showed her a photo of Benoit online.
“I know that it was her,” Craft said.
Benoit rents a home on Beechcrest Drive in Waverley and has lived there almost a year, her landlord, Chang Lin, said Tuesday.
“They always have a couple of little dogs,” he said.
Lin said he was unaware of any allegations involving Benoit.
“As long as they pay rent there’s not much I can say about them,” the landlord said.
Although some phone numbers Benoit once used have been disconnected, a gravelly voiced woman is heard on one number saying “Ms. Benoit” when the caller is prompted to leave a message.
Benoit didn’t return calls on Tuesday.
“I know what happened to them,” Craft said of her beloved boxers. “She sold them.”
Craft has heard that her dogs are in Bridgewater and are OK. She wants them back.
Scott Saunders, an animal advocate in the Annapolis Valley, has worked with Kijiji website administrators for more than a year to filter out questionable dog-for-sale ads he believes are posted by Benoit.
He alleges she is now enlisting others to post ads on her behalf by pretending she needs help using a computer.
“We will continue to exhaust ourselves, battling this woman,” Saunders said. “We will not go away. We will not give up.
“But ultimately it is up to the authorities to realize that this is a chronic issue that needs to be addressed.”
Benoit, 42, and her partner Dana Bailey, 50, were convicted in 2009 of animal cruelty for selling sick puppies.
Benoit was also convicted of assaulting an SPCA officer, her third conviction since 1994 for assaulting a peace officer.
The trial was tied to the seizure of 10 pups from their Roxville, Digby County, home in October 2007.
They were fined $1,500 each and Benoit was jailed for 21 days for resisting arrest. She was handed a suspended sentence for the assault.
At sentencing, the Crown alleged the couple had sold up to 30,000 dogs in 13 years.
The CTV news clip from January 29th can be found here - http://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=854147&binId=1.820651&playlistPageNum=1
The CTV news piece from January 28th can be found here - http://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/woman-claims-dog-sitter-sold-pets-without-permission-1.1133180
It says -
A New Brunswick woman claims she has been cheated out of her dogs, possibly by a woman convicted of animal cruelty.
Cassie Craft says she boarded her two Boxers, Diamond and Bentley, when she returned to school in November after realizing she couldn’t care for the dogs while working and attending school.
She began looking for help and after exhausting her search in the Saint John area, a Nova Scotia woman answered her online ad.
Cassie Craft believes her beloved pet Boxers have been stolen and sold and she wants them back.
Craft reluctantly moved the dogs to the Halifax area on a temporary basis and kept in regular contact with their keeper for awhile.
“She emailed me and she said they’re doing great. She talked to me on the phone and said they’re doing great, and then all of a sudden I stopped getting emails.”
She says she will also have trouble trusting others in the future.