First witnesses take stand in dog abuse case

The trial of Brandon Scott Harrison, who is accused of beating a small dog in April of 2013, began at the Duncan courthouse Monday.

Harrison is charged with causing unnecessary pain and suffering to an animal, causing an animal to continue to be in distress, uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm and criminal harassment. He has pleaded not guilty.

Chris and Leigh Davies testified in the morning about seeing an incident on Cowichan Lake Road on April 21, 2013, where they say Harrison violently attacked a small dog they later dubbed "Terry".

A witness scheduled to appear in the afternoon did not arrive, and both Crown counsel Peter Benning and defence counsel Seth Cooper told the judge they feel her testimony is important and want her to take the stand. The judge then gave the Crown until 5 p.m. to contact the witness.

Benning said Tuesday morning he had not been able to get hold of the witness and the case will be continued until a later date, with subpoenas being issued for the remaining witnesses.