Accused puppy shooter to face court after COVID delay
A MAN charged with fatally shooting a puppy with a crossbow will face a hearing later this year.
South Golden Beach man Robert Bruce Stewart, 60, has pleaded not guilty to committing an act of aggravated cruelty upon an animal and recklessly beating and seriously injuring an animal.
The charges relate to an incident on the morning of Friday, December 6 last year.
Police will allege Mr Stewart fired three arrows at an Irish wolfhound puppy, named Bucket.
They will allege the final arrow struck Bucket in the back.
The puppy was taken to a veterinarian for treatment but was later euthanised.
A hearing was originally scheduled for two days in May.
But as with many cases before the courts, that hearing was vacated due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The case returned briefly to Byron Bay Local Court on Tuesday.
The court heard a veterinarian, understood to be a prosecution witness, may be called for cross-examination during the hearing.
Magistrate Karen Stafford set the matter down for a two-day hearing on October 20 and 21.
Police have also brought applications for five apprehended violence orders, which propose to protect five separate people from the accused.
The court heard those people included neighbours of Mr Stewart and witnesses to the alleged incident.
When he lodged not guilty pleas in January, Mr Stewart's lawyer, John Weller, said they would defend the charges on the basis his client had not intended to strike the puppy.