Monday, February 29, 2016

Indiana: Abandoned, dead dogs lead to cruelty charges against William Brandenburg, 26, and Jessica Brandenburg, 19

INDIANA -- The discovery of two abandoned dogs – one malnourished and the other dead – found chained outside a mobile home has resulted in criminal charges against a Winchester couple.

William Brandenburg, 26, and Jessica Brandenburg, 19, are each charged with cruelty to an animal, a Class A misdemeanor carrying up to a year in jail.


According to court documents filed by Randolph County Prosecutor David Daly’s office, a sheriff’s deputy was sent to a mobile home in the 1600 block of West Ind. 32 on Jan. 25 after receiving a report of abandoned dogs there.

Deputy Jerry Hammons reported one dog was found secured to a tree with a “cable lead line,” and had no access to food or water.


Another dog was found dead “under a makeshift shelter” that was full of trash and debris, the deputy wrote. That animal’s “skeletal structure was visible throughout the whole body,” he added, and there was was no food or water nearby.

The dead animal was also on a wire lead.

In another report, animal control officer Joe Sheets wrote that the surviving dog’s choker chain had “dug into the animal’s neck,” causing scarring and hair loss.

Taken to the Winchester Animal Shelter,  the canine was given buckets of water and food, and “attempted to devour both buckets,” Sheets added.


The property’s landlord identified the Brandenburgs as the most recent occupants of the mobile home. She reported no one had been seen there for about two weeks.


Initial hearings in the animal cruelty cases are set for March 16 in Randolph Superior Court.

William Brandenburg is set to stand trial in the same court March 18 on a domestic battery charge filed last June.

Repeat offender Truro rabbit farmer Kenneth Abert admits to animal cruelty; gets just one year of probation

MASSACHUSETTS -- A Provincetown man who raised rabbits for sale as meat or fur was placed on probation for one year after admitting sufficient facts Wednesday in Orleans District Court to a charge of animal cruelty.

As part of that plea deal, Kenneth Abert, 56, also was ordered not to possess rabbits and to have no involvement in the sale of rabbits or their meat.

After receiving a report from an officer with the Massachusetts Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, who had been unsuccessful in getting Abert and property owner Luther Bumps to improve living conditions for a horse and eight rabbits, Truro Animal Control Officer Suzanne Trasavage and police Officer Thomas Roda visited Bumps' home on Bayview Drive in North Truro in August.

In her report, Trasavage described being overcome by the smell of urine and said the rabbits were sitting in their own feces in stacked cages in a basement with no ventilation. Their food was moldy and some of the rabbits did not have water. The horse had no covered shelter and its water trough was covered in algae.

Abert previously had been ordered to shut down a similar operation in Provincetown, where he was found to have kept more than 50 meat rabbits to be slaughtered and sold to local restaurants. He also had as many as 10 Angora rabbits bred for their fur. Provincetown officials found the living conditions at the Race Point Road property similar to those in North Truro.

Abert did not have a permit to raise rabbits and neither did the slaughterhouse he used, according to court documents.


As part of the plea deal, a charge of obstruction of an animal inspection was dropped.

Bumps is due back in court March 25 for a hearing on a motion to suppress evidence on a charge of animal cruelty.

The eight rabbits turned over from the Truro operation were placed at the MSPCA Cape Cod shelter in Centerville or the Animal Rescue League of Boston's shelter in Brewster. All have since been adopted, shelter spokesmen said Wednesday.

(Cape Cod Times - Feb 24, 2016)

Earlier:

Louisiana: Dog deemed a hero after finding missing toddler

LOUISIANA -- A mother and a community is resting easy just days after a missing boy was found safe. The remarkable rescue is all thanks to an unlikely hero.

You can't miss three-year-old Eli Alcock. Even in a crowd… his little voice sticks out.

It's a sound his mother Lindsy thought she'd never hear again after he went missing Tuesday night.


"Imagining never seeing him again...never hearing him again. Just the reality of what was happening...I mean it was hard," she said.


Drowning in fear and desperate for help Alcock turned to the community.

"That's when we kind of started freaking out and called the sheriff's department and got on Facebook and asked people to come and help and look," she added.

Doug Downs said he wasn't far from home when he got a call asking him to step in.


"And asked me if Honey who is, you know, she's been tracking deer with her for three years asked me if she would do anything," Downs said.

With her keen sense of smell his hunting dog Honey has quite the reputation. Though Downs admits the idea was a long shot, he dropped everything. He and Honey were determined to help any way they could.

"The pressure was on because you're asked to come do something that you've never done before," Downs said.


After hours of searching finally came the moment the mother and the community had been praying for. Little Eli was found safe in the woods.

"Of course I was ecstatic,” Alcock said. “I was thanking God and it was so amazing...everybody was hugging.”

Downs, a local pastor, believes it was more than just luck on their side.

 

“The good Lord was watching over us that night,” Downs said. “He showed up and He showed out and He showed up through a four-legged dog and He showed us his power that night and that's really where all the credit it due."

Eli's mother says the toddler doesn't remember much about what happened that night but she does plan to tell him… when he's older… how Honey saved his life.

Michigan: Sharon Bath and her son Kevin Roberts Receive Probation Sentence

MICHIGAN -- A Marion Township man and his mother were sentenced Tuesday to probation for not providing “adequate care” to more than 75 cats on their property.

Neither Kevin Roberts nor his mother, Sharon Gail Bath, both of whom earlier entered a plea to animal cruelty charges, chose to speak prior to sentencing, but the judge had plenty to say as she addressed Roberts.


“I’m going to try to be especially clear to you today,” Judge Miriam Cavanaugh said Tuesday, hinting at Roberts’ prior bond violation by continuing to care for feral cats on his property on Dutcher Road despite another judge’s order to stop.

“If there are further violations, you’re essentially going to tie the court’s hands,” the judge added. “I’m going to sentence you accordingly, and your guidelines dictate a sentence in the area between 10 and 34 months. Not only could that possibly be Livingston County Jail, that could be prison. … You and your mom have created a mess out there that’s become a menace to the community where you live.”

Bath was sentenced to two years of probation and Roberts to five years of probation. Both were ordered to actively live-trap the feral cats and call Livingston County Animal Control in an effort to “clear up” the problem they created.

That order caused Bath to bury her face in her hands and cry.

Animal control officers estimated that at least 20 feral cats are still roaming the area.

The mother and son also were ordered not to own, possess, feed or shelter any animals “of any kind” and not to possess animal paraphernalia such as food, cages, litter or toys.

Cavanaugh made an exception to allow tuna to be placed in the traps as an enticement to trap the feral cats still roaming the area.

Animal control officers took about 77 cats from Roberts’ home in the 2800 block of Dutcher Road in August. Authorities said one of the cats died.

Roberts told the Livingston Daily in an earlier interview that the colony of cats on his property “are from around the neighborhood” or from those who drop them off because they know Roberts and his 72-year-old mother, who lives in the same home, will give the cats food and water.

Michigan Public Sex Offender Registry

(Livingston Daily - Feb 25, 2016)

Earlier:

Maine: Presque Isle man Joseph Davis arrested on animal cruelty charges

MAINE -- A Presque Isle man has been arrested as part of an investigation into animal cruelty.

Earlier this month the PD began receiving complaints about a possible animal abuse case. The complaint involved a young puppy being tethered to a rather large chain and brick and forced to drag it around during walks in the neighborhood.


Animal Control Officer Dan Corey immediately began his investigation into the complaint.

Beyond using the chain and brick, ACO Corey developed probable cause to believe that Joseph Davis, of Presque Isle, cropped the 4 month old puppy's ears without a veterinary license, using scissors and no anesthetic or sedation for the painful procedure.

Mr. Davis was charged with a felony count of Aggravated Cruelty to Animals and a misdemeanor charge for practicing unlicensed veterinary services.

(WAGM - Feb 29, 2016)


Maryland: Candidate for Hagerstown mayor Rachel Cooper (aka Rebecca Cage) was convicted of animal cruelty in 2013

MARYLAND -- A candidate for mayor of Hagerstown said she was wrongly convicted of animal cruelty in 2013 and plans to fight the convictions.

Rachel Cooper, one of four people running for mayor of Hagerstown in the April 26 primary election, was convicted twice in 2013 of six counts of animal cruelty, according to court documents.

A Humane Society of Washington County officer entered Cooper's North Cannon Avenue home and found dogs with their bones showing and numerous piles of feces in the kitchen and living room, according to court records.

Cooper was convicted under the name Rebecca Cage, according to court records. She changed her name to Rachel Cooper last year, records show.


Cooper, 34, of 444 Stratford Ave., said in a telephone interview that the allegations were untrue and she plans to continue to fight them. Cooper said her life was "devastated" because of the ordeal.

Cooper was charged with six counts of animal cruelty by deprivation of necessary sustenance, six counts of animal cruelty for failing to provide nutritious food/necessary medical care and six counts of failure to vaccinate for rabies, according to Washington County Circuit Court records.

Washington County District Judge Ralph H. France II threw out the six counts of animal cruelty for failing to provide nutritious food/necessary medical care, saying they were duplicitous, according to court records.

Cooper was convicted Feb. 27, 2013, of six counts of animal cruelty by deprivation of necessary sustenance and four counts of failure to vaccinate for rabies, according to district court records.

Cooper appealed the decision to Washington County Circuit Court, where she was convicted of the same charges on Nov. 25, 2013, according to court records.

Cooper was sentenced to 319 days in jail, which were suspended, and $400 in fines that also were suspended, according to court records.

At her sentencing, Washington County Circuit Judge Daniel P. Dwyer prohibited Cooper from owning any mammals for three years. Cooper also was sentenced to three years of probation. 

Humane society officers took Cooper's dogs when they went to her house on May 2, 2012, and as part of her probation, Dwyer ordered that her dogs would not be returned to her.

On Aug. 24, 2015, Cooper filed a motion to terminate her probation after two years and seven months. Cooper said in the motion that she took good care of a cockatiel and that she had been regularly attending therapy sessions at Brook Lane North Village in Hagerstown, among other terms of her probation.

Cooper said she also was testing to be eligible for licensure as a cosmetologist in the state and was concerned that being on probation would prevent her from maintaining the license, according to court records.

Cooper's circuit-court file includes a letter from Sue Pinion of Brook Lane of North Village, who said she was working with Cooper. Pinion said in her letter that Cooper suffered from extreme anxiety and had a fragile sense of safety. Pinion said the staff at Brook Lane was helping Cooper work through her feelings and channel her intense emotions into healthy, assertive behaviors.

Dwyer agreed on Sept. 8 to terminate the probation and issued a message to Cooper, according to court records.

"Ms. Cage, please remember that to love animals is not enough. We also have a duty to be responsible to them," Dwyer wrote in the order.

Jaime Burger, a field-services officer for the humane society, said in a complaint filed May 30, 2012, in district court that there were ongoing animal cases at Cooper's home, which at the time was in the 200 block of North Cannon Avenue.

Burger said she arrived at Cooper's home on May 2, 2012, as part of a follow-up on Cooper's six dogs.

"The moment I saw the dogs, I could tell that they had all lost weight compared to when I last saw them in March 2012," Burger wrote in her complaint.

One of the dogs, a 6-month old pit bull puppy, looked the worst, with hair loss on her ears, head and legs, scabs all over her neck and chest, and a protruding backbone, hip bones and ribs, Burger wrote.

"The house smelled like urine and feces, and I saw two large puddles of urine in the hallway, and numerous piles of feces in the kitchen and living room," Burger wrote.

Burger said she asked Cooper if she had any food for the dogs. When Cooper replied that she did, Burger asked her to retrieve it and give some to the animals.

"She poured two piles on the floor and all the dogs were fighting to get to the food. They were growling and snapping at each other to have control of the food," Burger wrote.

Cooper said she fed the dogs that morning, but Burger said the dogs would not have acted that way if they were fed on a regular basis.

Burger said she decided to remove the dogs, and the Hagerstown Police Department responded while Burger took photographs and removed the animals.

Reached by phone, Cooper objected to the way the case was handled and criticized the Humane Society of Washington County's involvement in the matter. Cooper also claimed she has been the target of mudslinging over the issue since she launched her campaign.

"None of it was true," Cooper said of the charges that were filed against her.

She said she is planning to challenge the convictions.

An employee of the Humane Society of Washington County obtained a peace order against Cooper after the worker alleged that Cooper shook her fist at the worker during a court appearance. The worker, Evelyn Garrett, also alleged that Cooper "asked a friend of hers if that friend could find someone to ‘take out’ officer Jaime Burger, the animal control officer who removed her animals," according to Washington County District Court records.

Garrett, who was a supervisor at the shelter, also alleged in a petition for the peace order that Cooper put up a website that contained slanderous and threatening comments against the humane society.

Cooper brushed off the peace order, saying the humane society only wanted to keep her away from the shelter and potentially discover the truth behind the allegations against her.

Cooper said she never talked about having someone "take out" Burger, but said she stated previously that she hated Burger.

Regarding the website, Cooper said "I don't even know how to put up a website."

Last April, Cooper filed papers in circuit court to change her name from Rebecca Cage to Rachel Cooper. Cooper said she wanted to change it to reflect her birth name, and her filing contained a state of Tennessee birth certificate conveying her birth name as Rachel Dawn Cooper.

Dwyer approved the name change on May 19.

Cooper said she changed her name to Rebecca Cage because of an identity theft incident and that the issue had been resolved.

"There's nothing sinister about it. It was just the right time," Cooper said of the name change.

Even though the name change was approved May 19, Cooper used the name Rebecca Cage when she filed her motion to terminate her probation on Aug. 24. Cooper said she did that because her case was under her other name.

Cooper is one of four people running for mayor in the April 26 primary. Voters will select two candidates to advance to the Nov. 8 general election.

Eleven people are running for five seats on city council, and voters will select 10 candidates to move onto the general election.

(Herald-Mail Media - ‎Feb 28, 2016‎)

New York: Hammond women Shelia A. Hollis, 53, and Aleaha R. Hollis, 22, charged with five counts of animal cruelty

NEW YORK -- St. Lawrence County Sheriff’s deputies on Friday charged Shelia A. Hollis, 53, and Aleaha R. Hollis, 22, both of 3493 County Route 6, each with five counts of animal cruelty by failure to provide sustenance.

Deputies charge that on Feb. 13 at their residence, the two women were in possession and caring for five horses and failed to provide access to a shelter for the horses when the temperature was minus 18.

Both women were issued tickets returnable to Morristown Town Court.

State police assisted in the investigation.

(Watertown Daily Times - Feb 27, 2016)

New Hampshire: Charged with animal cruelty, Ossipee woman Laurinda Miller contests evidence

NEW HAMPSHIRE -- The woman accused of 21 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty is asking a judge to reconsider his ruling on evidence in her upcoming trial.

On July 10, 2015, authorities executed a search warrant at Sweet Paws Spa & Inn and the Sweet Tails Animal Rescue, both of which are located at 1800 Route 16 in Center Ossipee, and found seven cats and 59 dogs in what they described as “deplorable conditions,” including living in filth as well as being malnourished and dehydrated.

 
Some of the animals were believed to have been rescues and all were later taken to animal shelters in the Mount Washington Valley and Lakes Region. Laurinda Miller, the operator of both Sweet Paws and Sweet Tails, was arrested.

Miller pleaded “not guilty” and late last year filed a motion to suppress, arguing that the credibility of the witness who made the complaint to Ossipee police had not been “adequately weighed under the circumstances in granting the search warrant.”

Miller also asserted that the search warrant should be suppressed “because it was overbroad and should not have included the home that was immediately adjacent to, although not connected to, the building where the animals were housed.”


In an order issued Feb. 12, however, Ossipee District Court Judge James Patten ruled against Miller, saying the state’s interest extended “to the defendant’s business operation in taking in and housing animals, not just the animals themselves. As such the basis for searching any structures on the property for such records was supported by the probable-cause allegations being made, and the request and warrant to do so was not overbroad.”


On Wednesday, Miller, through Justin Littlefield, her public defender, asked Patten to reconsider his ruling, saying that he had never acted on her claim of lack of connection between her business and her residence.


There was “no reason to believe,” Littlefield wrote, that the informant who tipped off Ossipee police “had any knowledge of animals or documents being located within the defendant’s residence. The only allegations contained within the affidavit refer to the defendant’s place of business and not her home. Given that these are two distinct locations and are actually separate buildings, there was no nexus between the information in the affidavit and the defendant’s home.”

(The Union Leader - ‎Feb 25, 2016)

Earlier:

Nevada: Spring Creek man James M. Jury, 21, sentenced on animal cruelty charge

NEVADA -- A Spring Creek man accused of locking a dog inside a trailer — for at least a week without food or water — has pleaded guilty to an animal cruelty charge.

James M. Jury, 21, was sentenced Wednesday to serve 10 days in jail, pay a $500 fine and do community service for the January crime, according to Elko County Undersheriff Clair Morris.

Jury was already in custody on a parole violation.

Morris said a neighbor contacted authorities after noticing the dog was in the trailer and there were no footprints in the surrounding snow. When they arrived and opened the door, the emaciated dog, named Lily, bolted out and started eating snow to hydrate itself.

“The dog’s doing fine now,” Morris said.

Jury was booked Tuesday on a charge of torturing, injuring, abandoning or starving an animal.

Morris said he pleaded guilty Wednesday in Elko Justice Court.

(Elko Daily Free Press - Feb 25, 2016)

Michigan: John Sporer, 24, arrested accused of severely beating his dog named Meatball

MICHIGAN -- John Anthony Sporer, 24, has now been charged with animal torture and cruelty after a neighbor in Eastpointe caught him on video assaulting his dog, Meatball.

Meatball was seized by Eastpointe Police last week. He's currently recovering at a local veterinarian.

Tim England, the neighbor who took the incriminating video of Sporer, says Meatball is a very sweet dog, and police say the mastiff-mix will not be returned to Sporer.


At his arraignment Monday morning, Sporer's bond was set at $10,000/10%. He secured his release after a relative posted $1,000.

Monday afternoon, 7 Action News reached Sporer on his cell phone, but he declined to comment.

Fearing for Meatball's safety, England made the video immediately available to Eastpointe Police.

England also provided video clips to volunteers with Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue when he felt investigators were not acting fast enough to remove Meatball and arrest Sporer.


Eastpointe Police included the following on their Facebook page:

"On the day in question, officers were dispatched to the home shortly after the event occurred. The suspect fled the scene and has not been positively identified. We do have a person of interest in this case, but he has not been cooperative with the investigation."

Eastpointe Police later posted:

"We appreciate the continued interest in the case of Meatball the Dog. While this is a criminal investigation and we are limited in the information we can release, we can say that Meatball is recovering and the suspect will be turning himself in in the near future. The prosecutor’s office has authorized charges and the case will hopefully be concluded soon. Meatball will not be returned to the person accused of abusing him. Thank you for your comments and support for the Eastpointe Police Department."


Sporer turned himself into police on Monday.

(WXYZ - Feb 29, 2016)

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Florida: Kurtis White, charged with animal cruelty in 2013, charged again with animal cruelty

FLORIDA -- No other information regarding this, but Kurtis White was charged with Animal Cruelty back in 2013 for throwing an artillery shell at a neighbor's pit bull, injuring it so badly that it had to be euthanized.

Name: Kurtis White
Arrest Age:25
Gender: Male
Birthdate: 09/23/1990
Height: 5'09"
Weight: 150 lbs
Hair Color: BLK
Eye Color: BRO
Date of Arrest: 02/27/2016
County of Arrest: Broward County, Florida


Charges:
#1 COUNTY SENT – FEL;
STATUTE: CNTY SNT – FEL;
NOTES: AGG ANIMAL CRUELTY

(Florida Arrests - Feb 27, 2016)

Earlier:

Florida: 911 call released from dog attack

FLORIDA -- The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office has released the 911 call made during a vicious dog attack early Wednesday morning.

As soon as the operator answered the phone, a man told her, "There are some dogs attacking a homeless guy."

The call was received at 3:17 a.m.


Investigators said Timothy Zell, 60, had been sleeping on the sidewalk in front of Greater Motorsports in West Palm Beach when three pit bulls attacked him.

A passerby heard Zell screaming and called 911. The passerby told the operator he believed the dogs were killing the man.

"Do you know how many dogs are there?" the operator asked the man, who declined to give his name.

"I would say two or three of them," the caller said. "They're on him. They just keep biting him, and he's yelling and screaming."

 
 

Deputies arrived at the scene within five minutes. The caller spent those minutes begging the operator to get help there as fast as possible.

"He's screaming. He's screaming. They're killing him," he said. "They're going to kill him if you don't hurry up."

The first arriving deputy shot and killed one of the dogs. The other two were located later and euthanized.

Zell suffered extensive injuries, but deputies said he is expected to survive.

Investigators said the dogs escaped from a nearby home.


Their owner, Stephanie Swetland, will be fined but is not expected to face criminal charges.

Meanwhile, this article from CBS12 "Animal Control claims dog attack on homeless man could have been prevented" says people had been complaining about the dogs' aggressive behavior while running loose but that no one would go on record about it, leaving Animal Control unable to do anything:

Animal Care and Control says the brutal attack of a homeless man by three Pit Bulls could possibly have been prevented if only people would have spoken up before the attack. "The missing component from this case is the fact that even though these dogs had a history prior to this event, we were never able to get witness statements from any of the people involved," Animal Care and Control Director Dianne Sauve said.


Records dating back to 2015 reveal several calls from concerned neighbors about the dogs allegedly running loose and threatening people. But without that statement, the agency says it hands were tied and not able to make a case of dangerous dogs.

"People need to call us. They need to not be afraid. We'll work with them," Sauve said.

(WPBF West Palm Beach - ‎Feb 25, 2016)

United Kingdom: Cat was shot in the eye in ‘horrific’ Peterborough attack

UNITED KINGDOM -- A beloved pet cat used up a couple of his nine lives after being shot through the eye with a pellet gun.

Jim, the three year old cat, was shot in Glinton last week.

Despite suffering horrific injuries - including losing his left eye - he is now making a recovery - but an investigation is being carried out to try and find who fired the shots.

Steve Perry (48), of Scotts Road, Glinton, said he was horrified anyone could carry out the attack.


He said: “He had gone out at about 1pm, He came walking into the house at about 5pm and it looked like he was crying blood.

“We took him to the vets, who thought he had a tumour behind the eye.

“The next day we took him back, and they took an x-ray, where they saw the pellet.

“He had two operations, and still needs to have stitches taken out.

“I was horrified anyone could do this. He is such a friendly cat, he is not scared of anyone. He just goes up to people to say hello.

“He is still recovering - we have not let him out again yet. We are looking after a few other cats for my daughter, and we have let them out. It is not right to keep them in.”

The incident happened on February 11.

Now an appeal has been launched to try and trace who shot the cat - who is named after Star Trek character James Kirk.


RSPCA inspector Justin Stubbs said: “I think he used up a few of his nine lives in this incident.

“The cat was shot in the eye with an air rifle, which is horrific. He is very lucky to still be alive - normally, we would expect the cat to die as a result of these injuries. I don’t know why anyone would do this to a cat.

“We would say that we can examine the pellet, and get ballistic records from it, in the same way it can be done with bullets from a gun.”

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the RSPCA’s appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

(peterboroughtoday.co.uk - Feb 23, 2016)

Florida: Someone is torturing small animals in Bradenton

FLORIDA -- Wildlife experts are concerned that someone is trying to kill animals in a Bradenton neighborhood. A raccoon was spotted with an arrow in its back and a duck was shot in the neck.

Earlier this month, an expert with Wildlife, Inc. received a call about the raccoon from a south Bradenton neighborhood. The poor thing had a crossbow arrow lodged in its back, and appeared to be in extreme pain.


“It went into the vital organs, enough to cause internal bleeding,” said Ed Straight with Wildlife, Inc.

The raccoon was immediately brought in for surgery, but sadly it died in operating room. The animal was not alone, though. A few weeks earlier, Wildlife Inc, got a similar call from the same neighborhood about a duck that was shot in the neck with an arrow.

“No matter how much of a pest wildlife can be or anything, they’re still protected, and you can’t be cruel to them,” Straight said.

Look how tiny he is... poor guy

Florida statutes strictly forbid intentional cruelty to any animal, including raccoons.

Neighbor Eric Iannelli is concerned for his safety. “Obviously an arrow can go astray and hit a pet or hit a person,” he said.

Iannelli says this neighborhood is teeming with wildlife, and there’s absolutely no reason to hunt them in this populated area. “Do not hurt animals, period,” he said.

My guess is that it is a teenaged boy who gets pleasure from torturing and killing animals. He has probably already shot and wounded/killed neighborhood cats as well.


Wildlife, Inc. filed a complaint with Florida Fish and Wildlife, notifying them of the problem. Ultimately, Straight wants the public to understand that this activity is not only wrong and cruel, but it could be very dangerous.

A Florida Fish and Wildlife spokesperson pointed out there could be the possibility that the raccoon was legally hunted nearby. But even so, FWC said people should follow ethical hunting practices. Hunters should never shoot an animal unless they have a clean kill. An animal shouldn’t be left to suffer like that.

(WFLA - Feb 22, 2016)

Texas: After bow-shooting a cat in 2015, Kristen Lindsey faces her peers at administrative hearing to determine the fate of her license

TEXAS -- Kristen Lindsey, DVM, the Texas veterinarian notorious for killing a cat with a bow and arrow and then bragging about it on Facebook, will appear before an administrative law judge March 8-10. The Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (TBVME) will determine whether her license will be revoked, according to court documents.

In April 2015, Lindsey posted a photo to her Facebook page that showed her holding an orange and white cat that had been shot through the head with a bow and arrow, with the statement, “My first bow kill … lol,” the post read. “The only good feral tomcat is one with an arrow through it's [sic] head! Vet of the year award … gladly accepted.”


Public outcry ensued, but the Austin County Grand Jury found insufficient evidence to prosecute Lindsey on criminal animal cruelty charges. Investigators with the Austin County Sheriff’s Office were unable to determine where and when the killing took place, or the identity of the cat in the photo, although Lindsey’s neighbors believed it to be their outdoor cat, Tiger.

However, the TBVME—working under administrative law, not criminal law—had enough evidence to find Lindsey in violation of the Veterinary Licensing Act and the Board’s rules and moved to revoke her license.

Lindsey denied the Board’s allegations against her, saying in an October affidavit that she believed the cat was rabid and a threat to her animals, “given the existing and extensive rabies outbreak in Washington and Austin Counties.”

However, her defense going forward is uncertain as in a deposition Feb. 9 Lindsey contradicted her original defense that the cat was rabid. The following is an excerpt from that deposition:

Question: The time you killed the cat, did you think it had rabies?

Lindsey: No.

Question: Do you think now that the cat had rabies?

Lindsey: I don’t know.

Question: Tell me a little bit about your educational background with rabies.

Lindsey: My educational background with rabies, for one, what we learned in school, which is consistent with what everyone learns in school. And secondly, that which I learned working for Washington Animal Clinic, which is that Washington County and Austin County have very high rabies rates, one of the highest incidence as far as counties occur in the state, as far as I know, that is why Washington County requires a one-year annual rabies vaccination as opposed to a three-year rabies vaccination, which would be appropriate in other areas such as Wyoming.

Question: But you didn’t believe that this cat was rabid?

Lindsey: Not necessarily, no.

Question: So you didn't submit this animal for testing?

Lindsey: No.

Question: Did you take any precautions related to rabies with this cat?

Lindsey: I wear gloves when I dispose of them.

Question: Why did you wear gloves?

Lindsey: Because he was a foul-smelling animal infested with fleas.

Question: Did you wear gloves because you thought the cat was rabid?

Lindsey: No.

 

Lindsey contends in the affidavit that the cat’s death was instantaneous and did not cause any unwarranted suffering, and that the Board doesn’t have the authority to revoke her license in this instance, because the act was not committed while practicing veterinary medicine, instead it was “within a generally accepted and otherwise lawful form of conduct occurring solely for the purpose of wildlife management or wildlife or depredation control.”

She also counter claimed that the Board’s prosecution is influenced by the public outrage surrounding the case and is “frivolous, unreasonable and without foundation.” She sought to recover her legal expenses, should the administrative law judge dismiss the case or find in her favor.

Did they really kill this poor cat and photograph it? If so, Kristen Lindsey
and her mother Becky Lindsey have blackened hearts and are soulless
creatures, destined to walk among the damned in the afterlife
ODIOUS HAG: Becky Lindsey is among Big Horn County’s longest tenured 
department heads at the Big Horn County Commission.

The administrative law judge overseeing the case disagreed and motioned for the hearing to be held.

The Board has filed a motion to exclude testimony from several of the witnesses Lindsey submitted for the March hearing because they believe she has designated experts to, “opine on subjects in which they are unqualified, and on subjects which are irrelevant to the present case.”

This Facebook page has more than 50,000 likes

The TBVME had received voluminous feedback in regards to Lindsey’s case, including more than 700 formal complaints, as well as written comments from all 50 states and 77 countries, and more than 27,000 emails regarding the respondent’s actions.

(DVM 360 - Feb 26, 2016)

Earlier:

United Kingdom: 17-year-old cat blinded in one eye after being shot

UNITED KINGDOM -- A 17-YEAR-OLD cat has been blinded in one eye after being shot at with a catapult.

The cat’s owner is now warning people to be aware of the dangerous weapon, after discovering that it is not classed as an offensive weapon.

Colleen Norrish, a teacher from Tadley, was away on holiday when her cat Bob was severely injured.

Her parents were looking after Bob when her dad saw a group of teenagers on the corner of Silverdale Road last Thursday, one of whom was carrying a catapult (aka slingshot).

A few hours later, Bob was found crying, and his eye was severely injured.

Mrs Norrish said: “He was rushed to the vets and we found out he has a fracture in his cheek bone and he’s lost his sight in his right eye and we don’t know if he will have to lose his eye.”

The 29-year-old added: “He is a beautiful but old cat and he is now in critical care. He is currently in too much pain to eat and it is seeming increasingly likely that he will lose the eye. He has most definitely lost all sight in the injured eye.


"We are really worried for him as due to his age any operation to put a feeding tube in or remove the eye is going to come with a risk that we still might lose him.

“Me and my husband are in bits about this and so shocked that anyone could do this to an animal.”

Mrs Norrish posted an appeal on social media asking for witnesses, and has received numerous responses from other people in the Tadley area who have experienced problems with youngsters using sling-shots.

She said: “One lady had something pinged towards her daughter and it hit her daughter’s leg. Others have had them pointed at their faces. The police said they have had quite a few reports and have put leaflets through people’s doors asking people to report children seen with catapults.

“I think you have to be 18 to buy one but you can be any age to have one. They aren’t seen as an offensive weapon.”

She is now trying to raise awareness of the issue to prevent other animals, or people, from being injured, adding: “What on earth are kids doing with something that should be classed as an offensive weapon? It’s extremely worrying.”

Bob returned home on Tuesday and was starting to eat, but is still unable to see out of his right eye.


Mrs Norrish said: “It’s heartbreaking. Catching whoever is responsible will not make Bob better but it might stop them hurting or killing someone else’s beloved pet.”

Police confirmed that they received a report of a cat being injured between 3pm and 6pm on February 18 after being hit with a catapult.

Leaflets were dropped to various roads in the area asking for people to come forward with information. Anyone with information is asked to contact PCSO Aimee Scott-Molloy on 101 quoting 44160072673.

(Basingstoke Gazette UK - Feb 25, 2016)

Pennsylvania: Teen charged with animal cruelty after being videotaped abusing injured and dying pigeons

PENNSYLVANIA -- A teenager hired to humanely kill birds injured by hunters at the Philadelphia Gun Club has been charged with animal cruelty after an animal-rights activist filmed him last month throwing injured pigeons and pelting them with rocks and ice.

The boy, 17, of Bridgeton, N.J., was working for a subcontractor hired by the riverside club in Bensalem to retrieve and euthanize birds wounded during a Jan. 30 pigeon shoot, Bensalem Police Lt. William McVey said. His name wasn't released because he is a juvenile.


Activists from SHARK (Showing Animals Respect and Kindness) have long protested the semiannual shoots, in which hunters gun down live birds released from boxes. A SHARK activist filmed the teen chasing injured birds on the riverbank, throwing them to the ground, pelting them with rocks and ice and jabbing them with sticks in violation of state animal-cruelty laws.

"The shoots are legal in Pennsylvania, so there's nothing we can do about that. Our concern is the treatment of the animal once it is shot, to make sure it's (euthanasia) done as humanely and swiftly as possible," McVey said. "In this case, it crossed the line."

Thrown into the back of a truck, like garbage

While SHARK activists were happy the teen was identified and charged, they accused the club of trying to mislead authorities by initially claiming the bird-basher was a heartless trespasser who wandered onto club grounds.

When shown the video, they LIED and said they didn't know who the person was in the video. However, later the same boy was seen walking through the entrance to the club and they admitted to police they had LIED to protect the animal abusing future serial killer.

This video from 2013 shows the disgusting cruelty:

"In the end the truth came out," SHARK President Steve Hindi said. "We believe it is important that this person be prosecuted not just for the cruelty to animals, but also because someone who causes such pain and suffering to animals may also pose a danger to people as well. That's why the FBI created an animal abuse database."

This shot pigeon landed on a roof, still alive

But Sean M. Corr, an attorney who represents the club, said: "The Philadelphia Gun Club cooperated with the police and does not believe the individual would have been apprehended without our cooperation."

Christopher Markos, an attorney for SHARK, said the teen's behavior may violate the terms of a federal lawsuit the club and SHARK settled last month, in which the club agreed to humanely kill injured birds.



"SHARK is pleased to see the animal cruelty statute enforced, but troubled that this was allowed to occur in the first place," Markos said. "It shows that whatever steps the gun club has taken up until now to keep its promise have been inadequate, so the Bensalem Police Department's decision to file charges doesn't satisfy SHARK's concern that future shoots held at the gun club also won't comply with the agreement. Right now, SHARK is exploring their options in pursuing an appropriate remedy, including returning to court."

Corr declined to address that issue, saying such debate belongs in court.

Pennsylvania is the only state to still allow live pigeon shooting, according to the Humane Society of the United States. Bills that would prohibit them have been repeatedly introduced - and shot down - in the state legislature since 1989.

(Philly.com - Feb 25, 2016)

Earlier:

Shot and dying, this pigeon fell onto the rocks
More than 70 percent of all birds are wounded, according to data compiled by the Humane Society of the United States.

If they fall onto the shooting range, teenagers take the birds, wring their necks or use scissors to cut their heads off, and stuff them into barrels. Even if the birds survive strangulation, they will die from their wounds and from suffocation.

If the wounded birds manage to fly outside the shooting range, most will die a lingering and painful death.

The juveniles-disguised-as-adults consider the birds litter, and don't pick them up if they fall outside the shooting range.

Pennsylvania's shame

Minnesota: Winona-area man Robert Bradley, 60, cited for shooting, killing cat with handgun

MINNESOTA -- A Feb. 16 confrontation with a cat ended with a misdemeanor citation for a Twin Bluffs man.

At 2:11 p.m., the Winona County Sheriff’s Department was notified that a cat had been shot at a residence on Leeward Road near Twin Bluffs, chief deputy Chris Cichosz said.

Upon arrival at the residence, a deputy found a dead cat by a pile of snow at the end of the driveway. Robert Oden Bradley, 60, told the deputy he found the cat by his garage acting strangely — making loud, screeching, meowing sounds.

“He said he thought the cat was sick,” Cichosz said.

Bradley told the deputy he tried to scare the cat away by kicking snow at it, but the feline “was facing him down,” Cichosz said. Bradley said he went inside, retrieved a handgun and shot the cat five times, killing it.

Deputies surveyed the neighborhood. No one claimed or identified the dead cat.

Because the shooting took place in close proximity to a street and a number of residences, Bradley was issued a misdemeanor citation for reckless discharge of a firearm, Cichosz said.

He should have been charged with animal cruelty.

(La Crosse Tribune - Feb 24, 2016)

Texas: Convicted of domestic assault in 2014, Christopher Maricle gets probation after another domestic assault which included strangling a puppy

TEXAS -- An Austin man accused of strangling a puppy during a fight with a woman in his house was sentenced Thursday.

Christopher Maricle, 25, was sentenced to two years of supervised probation and one year in Mower County Jail if he fails to follow the conditions set by the court, with credit for 96 days time served. He also received 80 hours of community work service.


He was charged in August 2015, with domestic assault, interfering with a 911 call and animal cruelty. Maricle pleaded guilty to domestic assault as part of a plea agreement, and the two other charges were dropped.

According to a court complaint, Maricle and a woman were arguing inside his home at the 400 block of 13th Avenue Northeast in Austin around 6:30 p.m. Aug. 11 when Maricle allegedly grabbed a 9-week-old pit bull, a pet, and went outside to strangle it on the lawn.

The woman later told police Maricle choked the dog with both hands around its neck before he threw it inside at a couch.


The woman tried to leave with the dog and call 911, but Maricle allegedly threw the phone across the lawn and wrestled her to the ground for the puppy. Maricle’s mother eventually drove by and took the puppy away during the fight.

Maricle later told police he and the woman argued over the dog and both people were pulling on the puppy. He also admitted to interrupting the 911 call, according to the complaint.

Maricle was previously convicted of domestic assault in January 2014.

In that case, the victim said a verbal argument happened in the garage and escalated when the suspect Christopher Maricle grabbed her wrist, pushed her down and wrapped a cord around her neck. The complaint added the victim was able to go into the house, but Maricle allegedly poured chocolate milk on her and around the house and broke several items, including a coffee table.


(Austin Daily Herald - Feb 28, 2016)