Lianne Price says she begged Eugene Krawchuk not to shoot her St. Bernard puppy after it strayed onto his property.

"I was crying and begging, 'please don't shoot my dog,' " she said in court Tuesday.

Eugene Krawchuk is accused of killing the one-year-old canine, Bentley, last April. His wife, Laurie Krawchuk, also faces a firearm charge. They are on trial for the charges in Saskatoon Provincial Court.

The couple lives on an acreage near St. Denis, northeast of Saskatoon. They share a fence line with the Price family who moved to the small acreage from England less than a decade ago.

lianne and bentley

Lianne Price said she saved her own money in order to purchase her St. Bernard, Bentley. (Fiona Price)

​Seventeen-year-old Lianne Price told the court that her 100-pound puppy had strayed across the grid road on the afternoon of April 11. There had been a heavy snowfall the night before and the St. Bernard was able to get across a fence and into the Krawchuk's field, where there was a donkey and a llama.

She said the dog was following the donkey playfully when Eugene Krawchuk approached them with a rifle.

"Bentley went behind me and he tracked him with the rifle," she said. "The gun was pointed at my chest, and I screamed."

Lianne Price

Lianne Price (Facebook)

Lianne Price alleges that her dog then moved to her side and that is when Krawchuk turned the gun on her dog and shot the canine.

It was at the time of Lianne's scream that her father, Michael Price, told the courts that he looked over to see his daughter in the field, on her knees.

Price told the court he had thrown on winter clothes and ran out to the neighbouring field as soon as his wife had alerted him to the situation. He told the court that his wife, Fiona, and their two younger daughters were hysterical and crying because they knew Bentley's trip onto the Krawchuk's land would bring trouble.

Price said at the time of the gun shot, he thought his daughter had been shot by Eugene Krawchuk with his 22-caliber rifle.

Price admitted that the prospect of his daughter being shot by his neighbour had him seeing red at the time. He told the courts that in that moment, he wanted to kill Eugene Krawchuk because he thought his neighbour had shot his daughter.

Once Price got closer to his daughter, he said he realized she was not injured, but was cradling her dog as he died.

Price testified that he then yelled obscenities at Krawchuk while dragging the man over to where his daughter was kneeling with the dead dog by the collar of his shirt, demanding he apologize.

Price also admitted to pushing Eugene Krawchuk in the back of the head shortly after.

Michael Price has subsequently been charged with assault.

Eugene Krawchuk is charged with two firearms offences, and with violating the animal protection act. His wife, Laurie, is also charged with a single firearm offence.

The trial is expected to wrap up Wednesday with the testimonies of the Krawchuks.


Read CBC reporter Dan Zakreski's tweets from court.