Jury chosen for trial of woman charged with mistreating animals
BY STEVE METSCH email@example.com September 11, 2012 5:32PM
Updated: October 14, 2012 1:42PM
The jury was selected and opening statements were delivered Tuesday in the trial of Dawn Hamill, who is charged with numerous misdemeanors for allegedly mistreating animals at her shelter near Tinley Park, her attorney said.
Purav Bhatt said he expects a quick trial that could end as early as Friday.
The state is expected to present its case Wednesday, and Bhatt expects to present the defense’s case Thursday, he said.
The trial is at the Markham courthouse.
Although Bhatt had hoped to question former Cook County Sheriff’s Animal Crimes Unit investigator Larry Draus — originally a key state witness — about his being indicted on federal extortion charges for trafficking cigarettes in an unrelated case, it appears Bhatt may not get that chance.
“The state is not going to call him, for obvious reasons, and we’re trying to find him. He’s avoided the subpoena,” Bhatt said.
Dazzle’s Painted Pastures Rescue and Sanctuary, 5555 W. 175th St., in Bremen Township, was raided Feb. 11, 2011, by the animal crimes unit, which removed more than 100 animals, mostly dogs and cats, along with a dead miniature horse and dead Himalayan cat.
Bhatt previously said Hamill’s Department of Agriculture license was renewed and her animal rescue operation is open for business.