The Minnesota Court of Appeals said Monday, that a Fillmore County man, Shane Reasner was out driving at night when he hit a black cow that had gotten through a closed pasture gate.

Farmer Ross Goldsmith testified in District Court that he did not knowingly let his cows roam and that he checks the fences and gates weekly.

Goldsmith had previously testified that he closed the pasture gate that night, but the cow went through the outer road gate, which was assumed to be open. He also said only one of the 25 cattle and calves got out. And he said only one other cow had broken out of the fencing since 1958.

Travis Dickinson, who lives near the Goldsmith farm and was with Reasner during the accident, said he was aware of cattle escaping three times in 2010 and 2011.

According to state law, it prohibits livestock owners from letting animals “stroll, wander, rove or ramble at will without restraint or confinement.” The ruling said that the district court shouldn’t have dismissed the case because a jury would have had opposing facts that they would have had to sort through.


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