Vigilantism frightens neighbour of Duncan pair charged with cruelty

Vigilantism frightens neighbour of Duncan pair charged with cruelty

WATCH: A Duncan man is calling for calm in the wake of a horrific animal cruelty case in Cowichan that’s mobilized that community to get “Justice for Teddy.” The couple who owned him is facing charges, but the anger towards them is now impacting their neighbours.

Phillip Joe has always felt safe in his Duncan home where he’s lived for 40 years.

“It is a nice place. Nice and quiet,” said 69-year-old Phillip. “Until the things started happening with my neighbour Anderson.”

Now, the Duncan man fears for his safety and won’t let his grandchildren visit.

“I don’t need these abusive things that are happening here,” said Joe.

His next-door neighbours are Anderson Joe and Melissa Tooshley. The couple were charged with animal cruelty after Tedd, the dog was seized by the BC SPCA in February. He was found living on their property tied up in filth, his collar cut deep into his neck. He died days after being rescued.

“I have to suffer for it because he’s my neighbour and people mistake my place for Anderson’s place,” said Phillip.

The public backlash over the case has motivated the movement “Justice for Teddy,” but Philip said some are taking it way too far.

Death threats have been made to the couple, and even him, because of his home’s close proximity to theirs.

“I heard someone yelling for Anderson and there were five guys with bats hammering on their hand like that and they’re calling Anderson,” said Phillip

“And they were looking at my house

The most recent incident, two weeks ago, was the most frightening. He woke to gunshots.

“Yeah there were two shots and the third hit this,” he said pointing at the wall next to his bedroom where a bullet hole still remains.

“It’s a shame that it’s got this far even the police say it – it’s gone way over,” said Phillip.

While the RCMP investigate, Cowichan-based group United for A Paws, is condemning the attacks.

In a statement to CHEK News they said: “Direct violence is not a proactive way to obtain Justice for Teddy and what he suffered through.”

Melissa Tooshley and Anderson Joe have both pleaded not guilty to charges of animal cruelty. If convicted, they face maximum penalties of up to five years in prison.

Skye RyanSkye Ryan

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