A Wisconsin woman who abandoned three ferrets and a dog who all died as a result of malnourishment was sentenced today to three months in jail and three years of probation.
Aysha Carbon, 23, of Manitowoc, pled guilty last month to four misdemeanor counts of mistreating animals and four misdemeanor counts of intentionally withholding food and water from animals.
Carbon was arrested in March 2021 after police found she had abandoned her apartment for three months with three ferrets and a dog inside.
The criminal complaint indicates that Carbon’s mother, Tamara Robertson, told police that she was concerned about Carbon’s dog, a pit bull named Saffire, so she crawled through a window to get into Carbon’s apartment where she found Saffire in grave condition. Robertson took Saffire to her home, where the dog later died.
Police executed a search warrant at Carbon’s apartment where they found the decaying corpses of three ferrets. During questioning, Carbon admitted the animals were her responsibility and she had neglected them. A necropsy performed on Saffire indicated the dog died of prolonged starvation.
Robertson spoke at Carbon’s sentencing hearing today and she said that her daughter had successfully cared for Saffire for seven years before she gave birth to her child and that complications with Carbon’s health and the health of her baby are what led Carbon to neglect her animals.
District Attorney Gail Prost told the judge that Carbon seemed to have a history of not taking care of her responsibilities. She said Carbon was being evicted at the time that she abandoned her animals. Prost said that medical records indicate Carbon had obtained no prenatal care for her baby prior to giving birth.
Carbon’s lawyer, Marcus Falk, told the judge that Carbon was diagnosed with postpartum depression; but no evidence was presented to the judge to confirm that diagnosis.
Carbon told the judge that she messed up.
“I deserve everything that was given to me but I truly didn’t mean it,” she said. “I loved my dog and my animals and I didn’t mean for anything to happen. I was just so overwhelmed and I didn’t know how to deal with that … I feel sick to my stomach because I did what I did.”
Judge Robert Dewane said Carbon’s crimes are “inexcusable.” He referenced the criminal complaint which indicated that several people had offered to care for Saffire prior to the dog’s death, but Carbon wouldn’t let anyone care for the animal.
“More than one person offered more than one time to help you and it didn’t make a difference,” Dewane said. “This was bad.”
Dewane said the argument that Carbon had cared for the dog for seven years prior to starving her to death was not sound.
“It’s like I’m supposed to give you credit for something you were supposed to do,” he said.
Dewane withheld sentencing on all eight counts. He placed Carbon on probation for three years and ordered her to spend three months in jail with Huber privileges to care for her child.
Huber is a state law that allows inmates to be released from jail during certain hours for various reasons including work, community service or childcare.
Dewane noted that due to the jail’s COVID-19 protocols, they are not allowing inmates to leave and re-enter the jail on Huber privileges. He said Carbon will need to apply for electronic monitoring and complete her jail sentence at home.
Dewane also ordered an additional three month jail sentence that is imposed and stayed; meaning if Carbon violates the terms of her probation she will spend another three months in jail.
If Carbon’s probation is revoked, she will be sentenced on all eight misdemeanor counts.
Carbon was ordered to pay $75 to the Manitowoc Police Department to cover the cost of Saffire's necropsy. As part of the terms of her probation, Carbon is prohibited from owning or caring for any animals.