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Accused Animal Hoarder Charged


More than two months after County Animal Services seized over 400 birds — mainly hens and roosters — from Sandy Coupal’s West Camino Cielo property, the District Attorney’s Office has charged Coupal with animal cruelty and failing to provide proper care and attention to animals. Both charges are misdemeanors. Authorities allege that the retiree from UCSB’s study abroad program was hoarding the animals, keeping them in too-small cages with insufficient food and water. Coupal, in an interview right after the seizure, said she takes in older, unwanted birds, and worries many will be euthanized at the county animal shelters where they’re being held. She’s scheduled for arraignment on 2/29.

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