Redding woman whose 65 goats were seized by the state goes to trial
A 73-year-old Redding woman who claims her goats were stolen from her by the state is now heading to trial. Authorities are charging Nancy Burton with 65 counts of animal cruelty, one for each goat confiscated.
"Do you wish to accept or reject the state's offer," asked a Danbury Superior Court judge.
"Absolutely reject your honor," said Burton.
A judge Friday gave Burton the opportunity to apply for accelerated rehabilitation. She rejected that.
Back in April, the state Department of Agriculture, with the help of Redding police, seized 65 of her goats from her Cross Highway property. Officials say an additional 40-50 goats on her property were found dead, saying all the goats were neglected. Burton claims she buried the dead goats. Some were found in trash containers.
"Under Connecticut law they had no right to seize even one goat without identifying that goat individually with an issue," said Burton.
Based on her decision Friday, her case now goes to trial. She could face a maximum sentence of 66 years.
"I'll enjoy every minute of it because I know in the end the truth will come out," Burton told News 12 Connecticut after court.
Burton, who is representing herself in this case, at times was contentious in court Friday. She reached out to the state to ask if she could see her goats, which the state denied.
'It's a very, very, very dark chapter in Connecticut history and I intend to see it through to the end until my goats are free," said Burton.
Burton is not allowed to own any animals while this case is ongoing.