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Janas pleads guilty in "Mary" dog death case, most jail time already served


WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAU) -- The woman accused of poisoning and stabbing her ex-boyfriend’s dog “Mary” pled guilty to the charges Tuesday.

22-year-old Sean Janas was accused of forcing the lab-shepherd mix to ingest bleach, and then she stabbed the dog to death in 2012.

Deputy District Attorney Theresa Wetzsteon said Janas entered the pleas before Judge Greg Grau Tuesday.  “The defendant entered guilty pleas to counts one and two of the information, which was mistreatment of animals, which is a felony, and exposing a domestic animal to a poisonous substance, which is a misdemeanor.”

Wetzsteon says the case drew attention from animal lovers worldwide, and she’s hoping the conviction can bring some closure to the case.  “I know this has been a very difficult case for the community. People who are animal lovers and people who don’t necessarily even have pets have weighed in on this, and I think it’s been very difficult to accept that this could happen to an animal, so I’m glad there will be some closure.”

The District Attorney’s office has been questioned about why the proposed sentence is not longer. Wetzsteon says they must follow sentencing guidelines set up by the Legislature.  “The Legislature determines what the maximum penalty will be, not the DA’s office.  We can only enforce the laws that are put in place, and right now, the maximum penalty on that felony is three-and-a-half years.”  She adds, “The Legislature breaks that down into one-and-a half years in initial confinement, followed by two years of extended supervision, and on count two, the maximum penalty is nine months in jail.”

Janas had additional charges of retail theft dismissed in Tuesday’s hearing, but they will be read in at sentencing.

With nearly fifteen months already served in jail, she will only have to serve between three and nine more months behind bars, depending on if Judge Grau makes her sentence consecutive or concurrent. Janas will be on extended supervision after her jail time is finished.

The sentencing is going to be held on March 17th at 1:30 p.m.