Worker In Cow Abuse Video Gets Jail Time After Guilty Pleas
Billy Joe Gregg Jr., 25, pleaded guilty to six counts of cruelty to animals and was sentenced to eight months in jail for abusing cows at a local dairy farm.
Gregg’s sentence also included a $1,000 fine and court-appointed mental-health screening. Gregg also must stay away from animals of all sorts as a part of his sentencing.
Gregg’s sentence was part of a plea deal. He originally was charged with 12 counts of cruelty to animals. He pleaded guilty to six charges, and six additional charges were dropped.
He was given the maximum sentence on the charges to which he pleaded guilty.
Each of the 12 abuse counts were second-degree misdemeanors. Each count is punishable by as many as 90 days in jail.
He apologized to his family and the community in Marysville Municipal Court Friday. He said he understands what did was wrong.
Gregg first entered not-guilty pleas on the 12 counts of cruelty to animals.
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The cruelty charges against Gregg were filed after an animal welfare group released graphic video Tuesday, May 25, 2010.
The video was recorded in an undercover investigation at the farm, said Mercy For Animals, a not-for-profit group that publicizes what it calls cruel practices in the dairy, meat and egg industries and promotes a vegan diet.
Gregg was arrested Tuesday, May 25, on the abuse charges.
Gregg arranged for someone to take his vehicle home while he was in custody.
Law enforcement agencies and courts worldwide are recognizing that people who commit acts of serious animal abuse frequently have previous histories of, or future tendencies toward, violent crimes against humans …
During the transfer of the vehicle, law enforcement officials said they found a loaded handgun in the vehicle’s console.
He was indicted on the firearms charge in early June.
He pleaded not guilty to one count of improperly handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony.
Gregg has not been sentenced on the firearms charge and a court date has not been set on that charge.
If convicted on the firearms charge, Gregg faces as many as 18 months in prison.
A grand jury decided in July the owner of Conklin Dairy Farm, Gary Conklin, as well as other employees would not be charged.
“It wasn’t my decision. It wasn’t law enforcement’s decision. It was the grand jury that decided there was not sufficient evidence to bring charges,” Prosecuting Attorney David Phillips told NBC 4 at the time of the decision.
Though Conklin did appear to abuse a cow in the video, Phillips said Conklin said those actions were necessary to get the cow up to avoid muscle atrophy.
“Mr. Conklin explained to law enforcement why he was doing this. The veterinarians examined the video and all of it, the whole segment of video, and determined his actions were appropriate, not at all abusive,” Phillips said.
Gregg will serve his sentence at the Tri-County Regional Jail in Mechanicsburg. He has credit for 120 days already served. He has served half of his sentence on the animal abuse charges.
A group of protesters were outside the courthouse Friday protesting the state of Ohio’s animal abuse laws. They were protesting the fact the abuse charges were only misdemeanors.
Editor’s Questions: Regarding the dismissal of charges against the owner, Gary Conklin, can someone please let me know who owns the town, lives in a mansion, and allegedly is related to a prosecutor or assistant prosecutor? If someone could answer these questions for me or provide evidence of their veracity, I’d greatly appreciate it, thank you.