Two people accused of animal abuse were in court Tuesday in Northumberland County along with animal rights activists.
Michael Wolfe and Angelina Coladonata are accused of throwing a pit bull mix puppy down a hill near Shamokin, severely injuring the dog.
Wolfe and Coladonato did not have anything to say as they walked into a courtroom in Shamokin. Wolfe faces animal cruelty charges and both are accused of lying to police. Wolfe admitted throwing his three-month-old pit bull mix down an hill at a cemetery in Coal Township in January.
“This dog lived. This dog is suffering now from their cruelty,” said Denise Kumor, an animal rights activist from Tracy’s Hope, an animal rescue organization in Luzerne County. She and other activists were in court to ask the judge to make sure neither Wolfe nor Coladonato ever owned an animal again.
“They have a child. The next time it’s going to be a child. They start with animals and they go to children,” Kumor added.
The judge granted their wish. For now, Wolfe and Coladonato cannot own or be around animals until the case is closed. They gave up their right to a hearing and said they intend to plead guilty in the near future.
Both were let out on bail.
Cheryl Hill is in charge of Mostly Mutts, the group that has been caring for the puppy, Harper.
“I’m hoping that they have to pay restitution. They’ll never be able to own another pet again and I don’t know what else. Sitting in jail is not going to make a difference to them anyway,” Hill said.
There is no question Harper has had a rough last few months, but Hill said she has come a long way and is doing a lot better.
“She’s now playing as a puppy. She’s ripping things apart, nipping, doing everything a puppy should do. She still has balance problems, no vision yet, but her hearing is back now,” Hill added.
No date has been set for Wolfe’s and Coladonato’s next court appearance. The judge said if either one of them is seen with an animal they will go to jail.