Rose Adams and George Beutler to face jury trial on animal abuse charges; Lake Ballinger neighbors raise concerns
Facing multiple charges of animal abuse, Rose Adams and George Beutler were back in court Wednesday with their legal team to make final motions and requests preparatory to their upcoming jury trial.
Despite arguments by the defense team that the May 2013 search warrant was flawed and should be thrown out, Edmonds Municipal Court Judge Douglas J. Fair found that the preponderance of evidence at the time justified issuing warrant. With no further arguments from the defense, Judge Fair ordered that the trial proceed as scheduled on February 7.
Adams is charged with two counts of cruelty to animals and one count of keeping more than the legal limit of five domestic animals. She also has a pending public disturbance case arising out of a separate incident.
Beutler faces one count of cruelty to animals and three unrelated counts of third degree driving on a suspended license.
According to Fair, these charges all carry a maximum of 90 days in jail and $1,000 in fines.
It has been more than eight months since a sensational video of animal abuse in the Lake Ballinger neighborhood triggered public outrage and resulted in charges being brought against the Edmonds couple.
While there had been previous complaints about alleged illegal activity at the Lake Ballinger-area residence shared by the couple, the evidence was insufficient for a search warrant. This changed on May 14 when the Edmonds Police Department was presented with graphic video evidence of animal abuse occurring at the couple’s home. In response, Judge Fair issued a warrant to search the residence, which was immediately served by officers from the Edmonds Police Department.
The authorities found 14 dogs at the residence. All were seized. Twelve were transferred to Adix Kennels, a local shelter that contracts with the City of Edmonds to board animals. Two required veterinary care and were transferred to a local vet. Adams was taken into custody at the scene.
According to Edmonds police, six dogs remain at Adix awaiting adoption or rescue. The other animals have been either adopted or taken in by various rescue associations.
Adams and Beutler have been free awaiting trial since that time. The couple was recently evicted from the home in the 23600 block of 76th Avenue West where the dogs were seized, but have stayed in the area.
According to neighbors, they have been observed in and around a home in the 23100 block of 74th Avenue West, and may be living in an older motor home parked on the adjacent street. The residence and motor home have been the subject of numerous complaints alleging transient and drug activity, and have been under surveillance by Edmonds police for some time.
“We are well aware of that address and that Rose Adams and George Beutler have been hanging around there,” said Edmonds Police Sergeant Mark Marsh. “Our officers have been there on numerous occasions. Our parking enforcement officers are also aware of the motor home and have issued appropriate citations. We will continue to be vigilant in that area.”
My Edmonds News has been following this issue since it broke in May 2013. A selection of previous articles is available at the links below:
— Story and photo by Larry Vogel