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Heather Zeffer gets probation for stealing dog

Zeffer said in court Wednesday she did not want to cause anyone any harm, and regretted her actions. She said she took the dog because she felt it needed medical care.
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Heather Zeffer
Heather Zeffer was sentenced Nov. 12 to one year of probation for the theft of a family's dog in April, 2014.
Zeffer said in court Wednesday she did not want to cause anyone any harm, and regretted her actions.

She said she took the dog because she felt it needed medical care.

After taking Partner, she brought the German Sheppard to the Baxter Animal Hospital on Lorne Street, where she spent $550 to shave and check him for scabies.

“None of your business to do that,” said Ontario Court Justice Normand Glaude. “How would you like it if I went into your home and stole your pets?”

In addition to a year probation – with a condition Zeffer avoid all contact with the Hasketts – Glaude mandated Zeffer attend rehabilitation to address what he said appeared to be psychological issues.

Zeffer has not yet had a psychiatric evaluation, but has reportedly been attending the Iris Addiction Recovery centre for alcohol treatment.

“If you come in here again, I'm going to send you to jail,” Glaude warned Zeffer during the sentencing.

Neil Haskett said he was pleased with the day's outcome.

“We want her to get help more than anything,” he said. “Obviously she has some problems, and it's probably in the community's best interest that we find out (what they are) and be able to deal with them.”

But Haskett said some of the facts in the proceeding were wrong.

Assistant Crown attorney Andrew Slater, for instance, said the video surveillance footage from the Haskett's home appeared to show Partner out loose on their front lawn.

But Haskett said the footage actually showed Zeffer's own dog on their lawn, and said Partner was safely inside their home.

He said Zeffer had to break into their home to steal the dog.

Zeffer is scheduled to attend Wellness Court Nov. 28, where the conditions of her court-mandated rehabilitation will be outlined in greater detail.

Glaude said he would monitor her progress over the next year.

Zeffer still faces additional charges for criminal harassment and threaten death or cause bodily harm, regarding a separate incident that occurred June 13, 2014.

Jonathan Migneault

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