Ex-councilman who shot neighbor's dog ordered to serve 10 days in jail

Published: Friday, Sept. 16 2011 12:12 p.m. MDT

DUCHESNE — A former Tabiona town councilman has pleaded guilty to shooting his neighbor's dog.

On May 13, Rickey Evin Wilberg used a .22-caliber rifle to fatally shoot a Chihuahua puppy named Rocky, jail records state. Duchesne County sheriff's deputies said he told them he shot Rocky because he was “sick of listening to the dog barking.”

The puppy was in its owner's backyard. Wilberg admitted that he had been drinking vodka before the shooting, deputies said.

Wilberg pleaded guilty Sept. 8 to a reduced charge of aggravated cruelty to an animal, a class A misdemeanor, according to court records. The charge had originally been filed as a third-degree felony.

Duchesne County prosecutors also agreed to dismiss one count of intoxication, a class C misdemeanor, in addition to reducing the animal cruelty charge, in exchange for Wilberg's plea,

After Wilberg pleaded guilty, Judge Lyle Anderson sentenced him to serve 10 days in the Duchesne County Jail, 24 months on probation and pay $1,000 in restitution to the puppy's owner and a $750 fine. Wilberg has until Dec. 1 to complete his jail sentence.

Wilberg, who owns several dachshunds, raised eyebrows in August 2010 when he told the Uintah Basin Standard that the misappropriation of more than $144,000 in funds by a former town clerk had him angry enough to “slap a horse or something.” He resigned from office following his arrest.

Geoff Liesik Twitter: GeoffLiesik

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