On May 10, 2018, the criminal trial commenced for Scott Baptista(10/24/91), of Pawtucket, RI, in Providence Superior Court. In January of 2017, Joe Warzycha of the Rhode Island SPCA began an investigation into the alleged malicious injury of a domestic short-haired cat, named “Baby Girl”, at the hands of Baptista. At the completion of the investigation, evidence indicated that Baptista had maliciously and intentionally injured Baby Girl, resulting in several rib fractures and other serious injuries, ultimately leading to her being euthanized. Baptista was charged by Pawtucket Police with one felony count of RIGL 4-1-5 for the Malicious Injury of an Animal.
Jury selection began on May 9, 2018, and the trial commenced the following day. During the trial, Baptista decided to enter a plea of nolo-contendere, ultimately admitting to the facts of the case. Associate Justice Willam E. Carnes Jr., issued Baptista a 3-yr sentence, with 8 months to serve at the ACI and the remainder to be served on probation. In addition, Baptista was ordered to complete 50 hours of community service and prohibited from possessing any animals for the duration of his 3-yr sentence.
A special thanks to Special Assistant Attorney Generals Jonathan Burke and Meghan McDonough for their dedication to this case. We would also like to commend Associate Justice Carnes for issuing a fair and just sentence. This was justice for Baby Girl and a victory in speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves.