Veterinarian's child porn stash included bestiality video

Mirror staff reports:

A Federal Way veterinarian whose child porn stash included a bestiality video has been suspended indefinitely from practicing in Washington.

In April 2012, Mark L. Besola was convicted of two felony counts of possession of child porn. Besola, a resident of Bonney Lake, formerly ran a clinic called A Small Animal Hospital in Federal Way. The clinic, which treats cats and dogs, is still open for business. An employee who answered the phone declined to comment on the case.

In April 2009, Pierce County detectives searched Besola's residence and recovered hundreds of pornographic DVDs, according to documents from the state Department of Health. Several DVDs contained explicit images of minor children, some appearing to be as young as age 7.

One of the DVDs contained a film clip of an unidentified human female, believed to be in her late teens or early adulthood, engaged in sexual intercourse with a German shepherd. Besola claimed the DVD belonged to his roommate, according to documents. Although Washington state law defines bestiality as animal cruelty, Besola was never charged with animal cruelty, according to documents.

In April 2012, Besola was found guilty and was later sentenced to 35 months in prison, followed by 36 months in community custody. He is required to register as a sex offender, and is forbidden to have contact with minor children while he is in community custody.

Besola's prison sentence has been delayed while the Court of Appeals hears his appeal, and according to documents, he is under the supervision of the community custody program. The report notes that Besola has no prior discipline history.

In September 2012, the Veterinary Board of Governors charged Besola with unprofessional conduct. In June 2013, the board indefinitely suspended his credentials. The board reported that "while the concept that a veterinarian might possess bestiality videos is deeply disturbing, the possession of child pornography is sufficient in and of itself for a finding of unprofessional conduct."

At an unknown date, Besola had posted the following statement on the website for A Small Animal Hospital:

"Growing up around farm animals and participating in 4-H as a youth helped lead me to my profession. As a young person, I would continually find stray dogs and, to my mother's dismay, bring them home and attempt to add them to our family. For me, veterinary medicine is not just a job; it is a way of life. Each day is filled with challenges and triumph, with personal satisfaction and joy."


We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

Read the Oct 21
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates