COURTENAY, B.C- A Comox Valley woman has been temporarily forbidden from owning animals after a court verdict last week.

According to police, 26-year-old Tara Betancourt was wanted for causing harm to an animal, neglecting an animal, and causing an animal distress.

Betancourt’s case had been making it’s way through the Courtenay court after charges were laid in August. The charges had come after the death of an eight year old female tortoiseshell cat, who was suffering from a “massive” tumour, that had been eating into her jaw.

The cat had been in intense pain and suffering when brought to the SPCA, and was later put down.

On October 25th, Betancourt pled guilty to three counts of causing an animal to continue to be in distress.

She received a fine of $750, plus a victim surcharge. She will also have 18 months of probation, during which she will not be allowed to be responsible for or own an animal.

Betancourt told the newsroom that she regretted her actions.

“I wanted to say that I never meant to lengthen the time my cat suffered with her illness,” said Betancourt, in a statement sent to the newsroom.

“I do regret having not taken her in sooner to be euthanized, in hindsight. I was trying my best to help her at the time and it broke my heart to end up losing her anyway. I am relieved that the charges have been dropped because they didn’t make sense to the reality of the situation.”