The prosecutor in the criminal case against California dressage trainer Gwen Stockebrand made the former international competitor a settlement offer today, however it has conditions.
The deal, if Stockebrand accepts it, would lead to the dismissal of a single animal cruelty charge. First, she would have to meet a number of conditions including completing 100 hours of community service, allowing animal control onto her property at any time to inspect her animals for the next year, and relinquishing all ownership rights to Valerie, the bay mare that the criminal case is centered around.
Stockebrand was charged with felony animal abuse in December for the alleged neglect of Valerie – a Thoroughbred mare. After more than three days of testimony during the preliminary hearing in March, the judge reduced Stockebrand’s charge to a misdemeanor, but denied the defense’s motion to dismiss the case.
Stockebrand is a former international dressage competitor. She was selected to represent the United States in the Olympics, the World Championships, and the Pan American Games in the 1980s.
If Stockebrand does not accept the offer, Deputy District Attorney Barbara Nanney says the case will go to trial. Stockebrand has two weeks to make a decision. She will be back in court on June 18.
Stockebrand’s trial has been scheduled for August 10.