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Forum staff reports, Published January 02 2013

West Fargo man gets 3 days in jail for mistreating dogs

FARGO – A West Fargo man accused of keeping two dogs in a sometimes sweltering garage littered with feces without food and water for more than two weeks was sentenced Wednesday to three days in jail and 15 hours of community service.

Jason Weisgerber’s attorney entered a guilty plea on his behalf to a misdemeanor charge of depriving an animal of necessary food and water.

Weisgerber, 25, did not appear in court. Judge John Irby said he wished Weisgerber had been there to explain his actions.

“The animals obviously suffered from his actions, which were callous,” said Irby, who added the community service to the sentence recommended by attorneys.

Police seized the dogs on June 4, and the court granted the prosecution’s motion to award custody of the animals to the state.

One of the dogs has been placed with a new owner; the other was euthanized, Assistant State’s Attorney Tanya Johnson Martinez said. She said West Fargo police went “above and beyond” in getting a search warrant for the garage at 1848 12th St. E. so they could remove the dogs.

In addition to the jail time and community service, Weisgerber must pay a $300 fee and restitution that’s yet to be determined. He will be on unsupervised probation for 360 days.