Judge to Rule Whether Raid on Painted Pastures Animal Sanctuary was Justified

Dawn Hamill was charged with several dozen counts of animal cruelty and neglect of owner's duties following a raid on her Tinley Park business in February 2011.

A judge is slated to rule next week whether the Cook County Sheriff's Police had probable cause to search and raid a Tinley Park animal sanctuary in February.

Dawn Hamill, owner of Dazzle’s Painted Pastures Animal Rescue and Sanctuary, has been charged with 38 counts .

Her attorney, Steven Decker, contends that statements of animal neglect made in the search warrant relying on the testimony of a county inspector and a third-party source named “J. Doe” are deliberately false.

To prove his point, Decker has produced building permits that Hamill received to construct temporary winter shelters, as well as an affidavit from Dr. Randy Verink, a veterinarian who swore to Decker that “none of the animals … observed were without proper shelter or in immediate need of veterinarian care.”

Decker said Verink routinely treated animals at the shelter and twice inspected some of the animals in the closing weeks of February, following the raid. Sheriff's deputies hauled off 63 dogs, 31 cats, six rabbits, three horses, two goats and two sheep, according to court records.


Phone records and an affidavit from a Dazzle’s employee are also intended to prove Hamill had been working on days the search warrant said she was not.

A report filed by the state on Nov. 1 argues that the assertions made by "J. Doe" had been vindicated after the raid. Prosecutors are expected next Tuesday, Dec. 27, to produce their own evidence, including a video, to back up the claims of the search warrant.

If a judge sides with the defense, the state could be limited in the evidence and testimony it shows during the trial.

Dina December 26, 2011 at 05:37 PM
I really hope and pray to God Dawn Hamill will pay for the cruelty and neglect of these animals.I was at her Nasty Sanctuary the day the animals were taken away from her.It was so sad to see how these animals were living.They had no food or water or heat and it was a bitter cold day.Dawn needs to stop blaming her former employee for bringing in all these animals.Dawn lives on the property and is responsible for what goes on there.She needs to be punished for what she has done.When the search warrant was originally issued the Judge found probable cause to issue the search warrant.There should be no reason for this search warrant to be dismissed.I hope the Internal Revenue investigates her and she will have to answer to where all the money that was donated to her was spent.Really makes you wonder when there are 3 Hummers in her drive way !!!!!!
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