Man pleads guilty to animal cruelty in death of Edmonton police dog Quanto

A man who has pleaded guilty to animal cruelty in the death of an Edmonton police dog is to learn his fate on Friday.

EDMONTON — A man who has pleaded guilty to animal cruelty in the death of an Edmonton police dog is to learn his fate on Friday.

Paul Joseph Vukmanich was fleeing from police last October when he repeatedly stabbed the dog named Quanto.

Officers had set the German shepherd loose after Vukmanich crashed a car with stolen plates and ran away on foot.

Vukmanich, who said he was high on drugs at the time, pleaded guilty to a total of six charges, which included animal cruelty and flight from police.

Officers complained after Quanto died that the strongest criminal charge that could be laid was cruelty to an animal.

The federal government said in its fall throne speech that it plans to bring forward “Quanto’s Law” to protect police animals, but didn’t specify what that might entail.

A private member’s bill to amend the Criminal Code to include such a law is also before the House of Commons.

Ontario Conservative MP Costas Menegakis has said his bill was inspired by the hit-and-run death of a Toronto police horse in 2006.

It states that anyone “who knowingly or recklessly poisons, injures or kills a law enforcement animal,” including a horse or a dog, could be subject to a five-year maximum sentence.

It’s the same sentence carried by an animal cruelty charge, but Menegakis said having a separate law for police animals would be a symbolic change.

Alberta’s justice minister has said he supports the bill and that the province is also considering changing its Service Dog Act.

Quanto is the fifth Edmonton police dog to die in the line of duty. The last police dog, named Caesar, was killed in 1998.

In 2006, Edmonton police shot a fleeing suspect four times when he started stabbing a police dog. The animal, named Wizzard, survived.

Kirk Steele also survived being shot by police but doctors had to remove one of his kidneys and an adrenal gland. A judge scolded police for using excessive force but a disciplinary hearing later dismissed a charge of unnecessary use of force against the dog’s handler.

Just Posted

Unemployment rate and EI beneficiaries down in Central Alberta

The unemployment rate for Red Deer region and the number of people… Continue reading

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Women’s marches underway in Canadian cities, a year after Trump inauguration

Women are gathering in dozens of communities across the country today to… Continue reading

Red Deer councillor balks at city getting stuck with more funding responsibilities

Volunteer Central seeks municipal funding after being cut off by government

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

In photos: Get ready for Western Canadian Championships

Haywood NorAm Western Canadian Championships and Peavey Mart Alberta Cup 5/6 start… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer city council debates cost-savings versus quality of life

Majority of councillors decide certain services are worth preserving

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month