Monday, May 21 , 2018, 8:06 pm | Fair 64º

 
 
 
 

Local News

DA’s Office Files Misdemeanor Charges Against Owner of 445 Animals

Sandra Coupal of Santa Barbara is accused of animal cruelty and failing to provide proper care and attention to her pets

A Santa Barbara woman whose ranch home was raided by county Animal Services has been charged with two misdemeanor counts that allege animal cruelty and failing to provide proper care for the 445 animals on her property, Deputy District Attorney Kevin Weichbrod announced Wednesday.

Sandra Coupal had chickens, turkeys, pigeons, quail, rabbits, an alpaca, two cats and two dogs on her West Camino Cielo property, according to officials.

The animals are being held at the Santa Barbara Humane Society, which assisted in the Dec. 10, 2011, raid along with the Sheriff’s Department.

It was the overall living conditions that warranted the charges, not necessarily each individual animal, so Coupal is only being charged with one count for each allegation, Weichbrod said. If convicted of one or both charges, Coupal could get sentenced with up to one year in jail.

She is scheduled to be arraigned Feb. 29 in Santa Barbara County Superior Court, Weichbrod said.

Animal Services had received multiple complaints from neighbors, according to Director Jan Glick, but the county got a search warrant with permission to seize the animals in December.

All of the animals are considered evidence and aren’t available for adoption, so the county has been asking for food donations to help out in the meantime. Glick said donations of chicken lay pellets, game bird feed and turkey ration would be helpful.

“It’s a very large undertaking,” she said. “It takes a lot of labor and a lot of food, but they’re doing a lot better.”

Donations can be brought to Animal Services at 5473 Overpass Road in Goleta.

Noozhawk staff writer Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Supporter

Enter your email
Select your membership level
×

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >