"It's a disgrace. PETA preaches to everybody not to hurt and kill animals. And they just proved it's OK for them to do it. They're hypocrites."
-- Andrea Press, Responsible Dog Owners of Eastern States.
In a decision that will one day live in infamy alongside such other notable judicial monstrosities as Dred Scott v Sandford
and Korematsu v United States
, a jury of twelve animal-hating North Carolina boneheads took only three and one-half hours on February 2nd to reach the conclusion that it perfectly legal for diabolical PETA to slaughter en masse
totally innocent and healthy cats and dogs so long as it does so without littering.
To make a long story short, the court ruled that North Carolina has a keen interest in keeping private trash receptacles free from the stench of rotting animal carcasses but absolutely none whatsoever in protecting the fragile lives of defenseless cats and dogs. If this same warped logic were applied to humans, genocide would be perfectly legal so long as the mass murderers properly disposed of the corpses afterwards.
The only positive development to come out of this barbaric ruling is that North Carolina's well deserved reputation as the nation's most backward state remains secure.
PETA death squad members Adria Hinkle, 28, and Andrew Cook, 26, were cleared of eight charges of misdemeanor animal cruelty but convicted of one count each of littering for dumping the corpses of their victims in a Dumpster behind a Piggly Wiggly Supermarket in Ahoskie. (See photo above of them celebrating after the verdict.)
For the littering infraction, they each received a slap-on-the-wrists ten-day suspended jail sentence and were placed on twelve-months of supervised probation.
They were also fined $1,000 each and ordered to split $5,975.10 in restitution in order to cover the cost of the proper disposal of the dead animals and the storage of evidence. They were additionally sentenced to perform a minuscule fifty-hours of community service.¹ Hopefully, this will not entail working with either cats or dogs in any shape, form, or fashion.
Since PETA footed the bill for the trio of smooth-talking shysters
who defended them, it will likely also pay their fines and restitution. They are after all still employed by the organization and it needs all the hired guns that it can get; there are a lot of defenseless cats and kittens as well as dogs and puppies that, in its opinion, need killing.
Other than its out-of-pocket expenses and the confiscation of its "death van" by the Ahoskie Police, PETA got off scot-free.
The coldblooded killers' acquittals were foreshadowed a day earlier on February 1st when lamebrained Hertford County Criminal Superior Court Judge Cy Grant reduced twenty-one counts of criminal animal cruelty to eight misdemeanor charges of animal cruelty. He also dismissed altogether three counts of obtaining property under false pretenses and reduced the littering citations from seven to one.
Grant threw out the felony animal cruelty charges because he ludicrously concluded that the prosecution had not proven either malice or any specific motive in spite of the fact that PETA never once denied perpetrating the slaughters. This is legal sophistry of gargantuan proportions. If a person, without justification, takes the life of another human being or an animal the absence of either motive or malice is irrelevant.
More to the point, several veterinarians and animal shelter employees testified in court that Hinkle and Cook had hoodwinked them into surrendering perfectly healthy cats and dogs by promising to find homes for them. (See Cat Defender post of January 29, 2007 entitled "PETA's Long History of Killing Cats and Dogs Is Finally Exposed in North Carolina Courtroom.")
Notwithstanding, Grant also voided the false pretenses charges. Considering the composition of the jury, it may not have ultimately made any difference but the panelists should have been allowed at least to rule on these counts.
Furthermore, it is truly amazing that PETA was originally charged with only twenty-one counts of killing cats and dogs. A police stakeout at the Dumpster revealed that on May 19, 2005 twenty-one dead dogs were dumped there. This was followed by the discovery of the corpses of seventeen dogs and three cats on June 2nd, twenty dogs on June 9th, and twenty-four dogs and fourteen cats on June 15th, the date of the arrests. Hinkle and Cook accordingly should have been charged with the deaths of eighty-two dogs and seventeen cats. (See Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, January 24, 2007, "Testimony Underway (sic) in PETA Trial.")
PETA was, quite naturally, ecstatic that its policy of pet genocide had received the judicial stamp of approval. "Justice was served," Hinkle crowed to USA Today
on February 3rd. (See "PETA Workers Cleared of Animal Cruelty.")
PETA mouthpiece Kathy Guillermo told USA Today
, "The important thing is the jury recognized they were never guilty of cruelty." She was equally disingenuous when she told WAYV-TV in Portsmouth, Virginia on February 2nd, "These are two people who have dedicated their lives to helping animals."
In victory, the PETA propaganda machine pulled out all the stops. Daphna Nachminovitch, supervisor of the organization's death squads, defended her Sturmtruppen
by declaring, "There were no intentions of cruelty, only good intentions to help animals which these two young people have dedicated their lives to. (See photo above of her being questioned earlier in court by Blair Brown, one of Hinkle's shysters.)
Agreeing wholeheartedly with Hinkle, she added, "I feel justice was served. We can now put this behind us and get on with our good work." (See Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, February 2, 2007, "PETA Workers Cleared of Major Charges.")
By "good work" she is sans doute
referring to slaughtering more cats and dogs.
The lack of condemnation of this hideous miscarriage of justice by cat and dog advocacy groups is a disgrace. The one notable exception was Andrea Press of Responsible Dog Owners of Eastern States who told USA Today,
"PETA preaches to everybody not to hurt and kill animals. And they just proved it's okay for them to do it. They're hypocrites."
The jury's unconscionable verdict is considerably less surprising once North Carolina's atrocious animal rights record is examined. Too cheap to spend any real money on housing and adoption services, shelters in the eastern part of the state not only use crude gas chambers (See photo below)
and firearms in order to exterminate cats and dogs, but they also purposefully allow thousands more placed under their care to die of hunger, thirst, the elements, and a lack of medical care.
During the ten-day trial, the defense devoted a considerable amount of time attempting to prove that the shelters knew that all animals surrendered to PETA would be killed. Since the capitalist media with the notable exception of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald
all but ignored the trial, it is difficult to gauge exactly what the shelters did or did not know.
More than likely they knew more than they admitted at trial, but the record is incontrovertible that Hinkle and Cook lied to them when they promised to find homes for cats and dogs that they later killed. Moreover, it is unlikely that Hinkle and Cook would have been killing animals in the back of their van unless they were attempting to conceal their crimes.
Although Hinkle testified that she and Cook dumped the carcasses because they were stinking up the van, the desire to save some of PETA's blood money was no doubt also a contributing factor. Prosecutor Valerie Mitchell Asbell forced Nachminovitch to admit that PETA pays $15,000 per year to Pet Cremation Services of Tidewater and that works out to around forty to fifty cents per pound of animal flesh. (See Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, January 31, 2007, "DA Probes into PETA Procedures.")
In this light, it is important to remember that PETA admits to having a kill-rate in excess of eighty-six per cent
at its Norfolk shelter. Asbell was even able to get Nachminovitch to admit under oath that PETA adopts out very few animals that have the misfortune to enter its shelter.
That is not really surprising in that PETA devotes just about all of its time and resources to hunting down and killing cats and dogs as opposed to sheltering and finding homes for them. That is the easy and cheap way of dealing with homeless cats and dogs.
It is also puzzling as to why the defendants were not charged with the illegal possession of sodium pentobarbital and ketamine since PETA is not authorized to handle, transport, and administer these controlled substances in North Carolina. Furthermore, neither Hinkle nor Cook are licensed to practice veterinary medicine in the Tar Heel State.
The conduct of the Ahoskie Police is also troubling. Since they knew of PETA's crimes as early as May 19, 2005, why did it take them a month to make the arrests? If they had acted sooner some of the cats and dogs that were later found in Piggly Wiggly's Dumpster might still be alive today.
PETA's surprisingly easy triumph in court is not only a setback for the animal rights movement in general but it represents a coup d'grace
for countless homeless cats and dogs in North Carolina and elsewhere. The moneygrubbing, sadistic hicks who run the show in North Carolina are not about to either outlaw pet genocide or to significantly improve conditions at shelters.Tant pis
, PETA is still telling lies and exterminating cats and dogs at shelters all across eastern North Carolina. Even those shelters that temporarily stopped doing business with the organization while the criminal proceedings were being played out are now expected to welcome it back with open arms now that the court has given it a clean bill of health and the go ahead to kill more animals.
Nachminovitch told The Virginian Pilot
on February 9th that she hoped to restore good relations with all the shelters in the area. "We just want to put this behind us," she added. (See "PETA Looks to Regain Trust After Court Case.")
The most telling example of how the twisted minds at PETA think and operate came during Hinkle's testimony (See photo below)
concerning one of Bertie County Animal Control Officer Barry Anderson's pet dogs that he had surrendered to her and Hinkle because he was having difficulty toilet training it. After assuring him that she would find a good home for it, she instead took it back to Norfolk where she promptly killed it. She stopped along the way, however, and took some photographs of the dog gamboling in a field of flowers which she then mailed to Anderson. It was only later that he found out the truth. (See Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, February 2, 2007, "Hinkle Admits to Previous Disposals.")
Although PETA proclaims from the rooftops that it has a right to kill cats and dogs without cause, it is also highly skilled in lying to and deceiving people about its true intentions. Its total lack of morality coupled with its finely honed ability to dissemble makes it a formidable foe for both legitimate animal rights groups and animal lovers alike.
The group's policy of staging publicity stunts where female celebrities and others undress in public demeans both the participants and the animal rights movement as a whole. Contrary to whatever PETA may think, there is a big difference between animal rights and voyeurism.
Besides, animals do not go naked; their fur and feathers are their clothing.
In conclusion, no individual or group, no matter how powerful, has a right to target any species of animals or group of individuals for extermination. Today it is homeless cats and dogs, tomorrow it could be elephants and whales, and the day after that it might be homeless men and women, invalids, or just about any animal or person that does not fit into PETA's fascist agenda.
PETA won the court battle in North Carolina but it is up to all cat and dog lovers to make doubly sure that it does not win the war. This can only be achieved by working for the dissolution of this supremely evil, phony-baloney animal rights organization and the incarceration of the homicidal maniacs that comprise its membership.Photos: Cal Bryant of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald (courtroom celebration and Nachminovitch and Brown), PETA (Bertie County gas chamber), and WVEC-TV, Norfolk (Hinkle in the dock).
¹On April 15, 2008, the North Carolina Court of Appeals threw out the littering convictions against both Hinkle and Cook. (See News and Observer of Raleigh, April 15, 2008, "PETA Workers Cleared of Animal Cruelty (sic) Convictions.")