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Cat Defender

Exposing the Lies and Crimes of Bird Advocates, Wildlife Biologists, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, PETA, the Humane Society of the United States, Exterminators, Vivisectors, the Scientific Community, Fur Traffickers, Cloners, Breeders, Designer Pet Purveyors, Hoarders, Motorists, the United States Military, and Other Ailurophobes

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Talkeetna Has Profited Handsomely from Mayor Stubbs' Enlightened Leadership but the Lure of Higher Office Soon Could Be Beckoning Him to Change His Address


Mayor Stubbs Enjoying a Glass of Water Laced with Catnip

"I am very confident that Talkeetna will be A-OK as long as we have Stubbs around."
-- Skye Farrar

As is the case with just about all cats, Stubbs came from humble origins. He was in fact a throwaway kitten.

His owner, for whatever reason, did not want him around and as a consequence he found himself in a cardboard box along with his littermates being doled out to the public in a parking lot. That was more than fifteen years ago and, luckily for him, he was selected by Lauri Stec who manages Nagley's General Store in the tiny tourist town of Talkeetna at the base of Mount McKinley and one-hundred-twenty-three kilometers north of Anchorage.

If a vivisector had been in that parking lot Stubbs' tenure on this earth would have been indeed brief and anything but sweet. While he was studying medicine at Harvard former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a Republican from Tennessee, used to adopt cats from shelters in Boston under the pretext of providing them with a good home only to take them back to his laboratory and then torture them to death.

In his 1992 book, Transplant: A Heart Surgeon's Account of the Life-and-Death Dramas of the New Medicine, he freely confesses to the commission of those atrocities. That is yet still another poignant example of just how easy it is for cat abusers and killers not only to get away scot-free with their heinous crimes but to profit immensely from them to boot.

Stubbs' fate would have been equally cruel if he had fallen into the hands of either someone who traffics in feline fur and flesh or a serial cat abuser. It therefore would not be totally inappropriate to sum up Stec's timely entrance into his life back in 1997 as a classic case of Glück im Unglück.

Sometime shortly thereafter the part-Manx cat, whose lack of a tail accounts for his moniker, was chosen as the town's honorary mayor and that is a job that he has held ever since. Although the internecine nature of local politics has destroyed many a promising young career, Stubbs not only has flourished but grown in popularity during his incumbency.

"He's good," Stec told the New York Daily News on July 17th. (See "Cat Has Been Mayor of Alaska Town for Fifteen Years.") "Probably the best we've had."

Mayor Stubbs Holding Court at Nagley's General Store

There are, of course, some rather obvious reasons why a diehard capitalist from the land from Sarah Palin and Ted Stevens would feel that way. "He doesn't raise our taxes (and) we have no sales tax. He doesn't interfere with business," she elaborated to Time Magazine on July 17th. (See "Cat Marks Fifteen Years as Mayor of Alaska Town.") "He's honest."

Obviously Mayor Stubbs' presumed laissez faire approach to economics counts for considerably more with her than do his personal attributes. If his post were anything other than ceremonial, he might surprise her by turning out to be an altogether different type of politician.

As the years have slowly gone by Stubbs' fame has spread well beyond Talkeetna and its eight-hundred-seventy-six residents. For instance, he has attracted nearly four-thousand followers on his Facebook page and regularly receives cards and letters from all over the world.

He additionally is extremely popular with tourists who venture to Talkeetana for the flightseeing, rafting, mountain biking, camping, hunting, and fishing. "Oh my gosh, we probably have thirty to forty people a day come in (to Nagley's) who are tourists wanting to see him," Stec pointed out to KTUU-TV of Anchorage on July 13th. (See "Talkeetna Mayor Is a Cat Named Stubbs.") "He was just in Alaska Magazine (April's edition), and he's been featured in a few different things."

Not unlike many other cats who have gone on to achieve great fame, a certain amount of mythology has grown up around Stubbs. Most prominently is the story about how he was elected mayor in 1997 as a write-in candidate.

As a Census Designated Place within the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, Talkeetna does not have a mayor per se. Rather, it is administered by a community council which operates under the jurisdiction of the borough. Accordingly, the story of Stubbs' stunning electoral victory, while compelling, is doubtlessly a complete fabrication.

Since Talkeetna is such a small town and, apparently, without too many social anxieties, His Honor does not have all that many official duties. Consequently, he spends most of his time hanging out at Nagley's where he often can be found dining on Alaskan snow crabs.

Nothing Escapes the Attention of the Mayor

Despite his elevated position, Stubbs, like all cats, is forced to put up with the persistent and pervasive scourge of ailurophobia. "His biggest political rivals would be other local businesses that would hate that he comes over and takes a nap and leaves fur everywhere," Skye Farrar, who also works at Nagley's, revealed to the New York Daily News. "They aren't big fans of him. We usually say, 'You have to deal with it. He runs the town'."

Besides the machinations of cat-haters, his many admirers sometimes get on his delicate nerves, especially when they interfere with more important matters. "He meowed and meowed and meowed and demanded to be picked up and put on the counter," Farrar told the New York Daily News. "And he demanded to be taken away from the tourists. Then he had his long afternoon nap."

Talkeetna's large canine population is another vexation that Stubbs must contend with on a daily basis although he appears to be holding his own so far. "I've never seen a dog mess with him," an unidentified local business owner told Time in the article cited supra.

Despite these problems and annoyances, Talkeetna has been good to Stubbs and he in turn has put it on the map. Under his enlightened leadership the town has prospered and its future looks bright.

"I'm very confident that Talkeetna will be A-OK as long as we have Stubbs around," Farrar predicted to KTUU-TV in the article cited supra.

As impressive as his meteoric ascent in the world of politics has been, Stubbs is far from being an anomaly. For example, tiny Sharon, Wisconsin, also has an honorary feline mayor.

He is an orange and white former stray named Freddie who showed up at Village Hall approximately five years ago from parts unknown and never has left. "We don't have a mayor. We're in a presidential system," deputy clerk and town treasurer Jaymie Kunkel explained early last year. "Our mayor is Freddie. Freddie the cat."
Freddie Ventures Across the Street in Sharon

Like Stubbs in Talkeetna, Freddie is the star attraction in Sharon. "He's pretty much a novelty in town. If he is crossing the street and there are cars coming they tend to slow down for him," postmaster Scott Vinke related. "They know he's got the right-of-way. So this is pretty much his town."

His outgoing and friendly demeanor has only served to enhance his popularity with the locals. "He's just loving. He wants attention," Kunkel added. (See Cat Defender post of February 1, 2011 entitled "Lovable Freddie Puts Tiny Wisconsin Village on the Map but His Affection and Good Works Are Unappreciated.")

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, three-year-old Tuxedo Stan is making a symbolic run for mayor. His owners, Hugh and Kathy Chisholm, even have formed the Tuxedo Party in order to promote not only his candidacy in the October 20th election but feline sterilization as well.

"We have an explosion of cats," Hugh, a retired veterinarian, told CTV of Toronto on September 13th. (See "Cat Named 'Tuxedo Stan' Heats Up Halifax Mayoral Race.") "We have literally hundreds, thousands of cats living in the street."

Having adopted "Because neglect isn't working" as its campaign slogan, the Tuxedo Party intends to use the proceeds from its sale of buttons, T-shirts, and lawn signs in order to finance a mass sterilization effort. The campaign appears to be gaining some traction in that Tuxedo Stan's Facebook page has attracted more than four-thousand friends to date.

Finally, although the residents of Talkeetna would dearly hate to part with him, destiny could very well have bigger fish in store for Stubbs to fry. Specifically, his presence is urgently needed in the Oval Office right now.

Although it goes almost without saying that he would be a decided improvement over those two obnoxious, no-account cretins currently vying for that all-important job, Stubbs would not need to run a negative campaign because he is hands-down a far better candidate in his own right. Most notably, his fifteen years at the helm in Talkeetna amounts for considerably more executive experience than his two rivals have combined.

There are other important considerations in his favor as well. For example, since he cares absolutely nothing about money it would be impossible for anyone to bribe him. Plus, he does not have any party affiliation and is not owned lock, stock, and barrel by either a super political action committee or any back-room city bosses.
Tuxedo Stan and His Campaign Slogan

On the economic front, since he is not beholding to either exploiters or freeloaders, neither group would be in any position to expect any handouts from his administration. The same holds true for those bloated bums and outright thieves who comprise the military-industrial complex and who thus would be forced to finance their own imperialist wars and foreign misadventures under Stubbs' watch.

Being a politician of few words, Stubbs would not subject the public to either any long-winded press conferences or interminable State of the Union addresses. Also, since he is pretty much of a homebody, the taxpayers would not be one the hook for any lavish Hawaiian vacations.

Furthermore, he would not expect any less from the members of his own Cabinet. In particular, he never would appoint a Secretary of State who travels, wines, and dines nonstop on the public's dime without so much as orchestrating a single diplomatic breakthrough.

If per chance he should harbor any obnoxious opinions concerning either sex or religion in his bosom he is sure to keep them to himself. Sinners and the unrepentant likewise have nothing to fear from him because he is neither a prude nor a saint.

He enjoys an occasional tipple like most people but his consists of water laced with catnip which he demurely slurps in a dignified fashion from a wine glass. That should not be misconstrued in any way so as to imply that he spends his working hours as pissed as a coot like so many politicians.

In order to keep up appearances as well as to relieve stress, he admittedly does indulge in periodic belly rubs and positively loves a good stroking. There is absolutely nothing inappropriate about these perks of office in that they are administered by employees of Nagley's and other well-wishers.

"All throughout the day I have to take care of the mayor," Farrar confided to the New York Daily News in the article cited supra. "He's very demanding."

If, on the other hand, he were to maintain a harem of young, attractive felines in order to fulfill these ministrations the scandalmongers, not to mention the media, would have a field day. Being ever sensitive to the whims of public opinion, Stubbs is careful so as not to be seen as emulating Bucky Katt of Get Fuzzy who on October 24, 2010 went so far as to salaciously define happiness as "lying in a laundry basket massaged by a polydactyl."

Once the personalities and philosophies of all the candidates have been examined it should be clear to one and all that Mayor Stubbs has everything going for himself whereas his opponents have absolutely nothing to commend themselves to the voting public. Besides, it takes a cat in order to get rid of an infestation of vermin.

Although it is already too late in order to get Stubbs' name on the November 6th ballot, supporters can still vote for him by writing it in on a paper one. A nation in search of a hero and someone to wholeheartedly believe in need not look any further than the mayor's office in Talkeetna.

Photos: Facebook (Stubbs and Tuxedo Stan) and Seer Press News (Freddie).

Monday, September 17, 2012

Contrary to the Neighborhood Scuttlebutt, Krümel Is Alive and Well, at Least for the Time Being, at the Hotel Garni Herold

Krümel Naps in Front of the Now Famous Sign

"Wenn Sie ein Problem mit meiner Katze haben, melden Sie dies bitte nicht sofort Feuerwehr, Polizei oder Tierschutz, sondern rufen mich an unter 2 23 35."
-- Part of a sign posted outside the Hotel Garni Herold

The myriad of utterly insufferable indignities that attach themselves like leeches to old age are by no means limited to those supremely vain animals that strut around on two legs. Cats, too, feel the sting of these affronts but to be prematurely pronounced dead surely must be the most undeserving and revolting of all of them.

Nevertheless, that is the unkind fate that has befallen fifteen-year-old Krümel from the former Hanseatic city of Hattingen in the German state of Nordrhein-Westfalen. In keeping with her long established tradition, she likes to treat herself to a nap in the street out front of the Hotel Garni Herold at the corner of Krämersdorf and Kleine Weilstraße where she resides with her owner, seventy-six-year-old proprietress Jane Herold.

When she does, her tiny head droops forward in an unnatural position that makes it appear auf den ersten Blick that she has departed this world. The fact that she some time ago lost her right eye to an infection coupled with her habit of sleeping out in the rain and heat only serves to reinforce that misconception.

Even those individuals prone to be considerably less pessimistic mistakenly believe that at the very least she must be either ill or hungry. As a result, concerned passersby have taken it upon themselves to telephoning the fire department and the police.

Tierschutz personnel also have been summoned to the fashionable bed and breakfast on at least twenty occasions and Herold's daughter even once intercepted firemen carting off Krümel (Crumb in English) in a trap. One man even went so far as to take her to a veterinarian but that did not accomplish anything positive.

"Ich bekam einen Anruf, ich möge bitte meine Katze abholen," Herold related to Der Westen of nearby Essen on August 22nd. (See "Aufregung um 'scheintote' Katze in Hattingen.") "Aber jetzt reicht es wirklich, das kostet mich und auch die Katze viele Nerven."

Clearly, something had to be done in order to put an end to these unwarranted assaults, not matter how well intentioned, on Krümel's liberty. Even more alarming, all of the abductions and precipitate interventions by the authorities sooner or later could have spelled doom for her.

In their rush to judgment, all of them overlooked the petit fait that she is perfectly healthy and, with luck, should be around for many more years. "Krümel geht es gut," Herold affirmed to Der Westen. "Sie ist zwar alt, aber noch fit."

Krümel

After having given the matter considerable thought, Herold decided upon placing a sign in front of her hotel in order to let passersby know in no uncertain terms that Krümel is neither hungry, sick, nor dead, but only a little crazy. "Wenn Sie ein Problem mit meiner Katze haben, melden Sie dies bitte nicht sofort Feuerwehr, Polizei oder Tierschutz, sondern rufen mich an unter 2 23 25," she added.

So far, the sign appears to be having its intended effect. "Ich merke schon, wenn hier Leute vorbeigehen, dass sie zögern and gucken," Herold told Der Westen on August 30th. (See "'Scheintote' Katze Krümel wird zum Medienstar.")

Soon after the sign was erected the Hattinger Zeitung ran a story on Krümel and that ignited a media firestorm. Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR) of Köln stopped by for two and one-half hours of interviews.

RTL television and radio of Köln spent three hours at the hotel conducting interviews and filming. Even Bild, the mass circulation daily from Berlin, did a story on her.

Krümel somehow got wind of what was afoot and in true feline fashion refused to indulge the media. "Die war ganz munter, als ob sie das geahnt hätte," Herold related to Der Westen in the August 30th article cited supra. "Als alles vorbei war, da lag sie dann wieder wie tot da."

At first Herold was astounded by all the media hoopla but she gradually adjusted to it and ended up taking it in stride. "Ich fand das ganz nett und habe mich dazu bereiterklärt (mit WDR)," she told Der Westen on August 30th. "Als dann noch RTL and die Bild Zeitung anriefen, habe ich schon überlegt."

Her guests at the hotel likewise have become caught up in Krümel's newfound fame. "Die fanden das spannend," Herold told Der Westen on August 30th.

Krümel and Jane Herold

Krümel's notoriety also possibly could be good for business at the quite reasonably priced hotel that Herold has operated for the past forty-five years. In particular, two individuals from nearby Bottrop have informed Herold that they came all the way to Hattingen just to see Krümel.

In addition to Krümel, Herold has a French bulldog, believed to be named Pauline, and the duo are said to get on famously together. "Die beiden lieben sich," she told Der Westen on August 30th.

Being not merely a lover of cats and dogs, Herold's compassion for animals extends to foxes as well. That is even all the more remarkable in that a red one beat her out of about a week's worth of free lodging a few years ago.

After having gained entry into the hotel via Krümel's cat flap, the fox took up residence in one of the vacant rooms on the ground floor. He even helped himself to Pauline's toys.

"Er ist wunderschön, so suß, so rostbraun," Herold raved to Der Westen on May 15, 2008. (See "Zimmer frei für Reineke.")

The only real problem arose when her overly enthusiastic guests began hounding him for photographs. "Wenn es ihm zu viel wurde, ist er mal kurz unterm Bett verschwunden, aber danach hat er sich auf dem Sofa niedergelassen," she told Der Westen.

Ultimately she was forced to call in the Hattinger Ordnungsamt and a hunter in order to forcibly, but humanely, evict the nonpaying guest. Ever since that time she makes certain that Krümel's cat flap is secured well before nightfall and, as a consequence, the fox has been forced to seek shelter elsewhere.

Entrance to the Hotel Garni Herold

Although luck has been on Krümel's side so far, that in no way minimizes the grave danger that she has been placed in as the result of Herold's inattentiveness and lack of concern. Furthermore, if she were living anywhere else other than in Deutschland this story very well could have had an altogether different denouement.

For example in Herold's native England, veterinarians make a living off of killing elderly cats that are picked up off the street. That is precisely what Blythman and Partners of the Gosforth section of Newcastle-upon-Tyne did with Beverley Hume's twenty-five-year-old cat, Ginger, last October 13th. (See Cat Defender post of January 11, 2012 entitled "A Deadly Intrigue Concocted by a Thief, a Shelter, and a Veterinary Chain Costs Ginger the Continued Enjoyment of His Golden Years.")

The RSPCA is even worse in that it earnestly believes that it is endowed with a god-given right to liquidate all elderly and sick cats. (See Cat Defender posts of October 23, 2010 and June 5, 2007 entitled, respectively, "RSPCA Steals and Executes Nightshift Who Was His Elderly Caretaker's Last Surviving Link to Her Dead Husband" and "RSPCA's Unlawful Seizure and Senseless Killing of Mork Leaves His Sister, Mindy, Brokenhearted and His Caretakers Devastated.")

In the United States, cats need to be especially wary of trigger-happy cops. (See Cat Defender posts of March 31, 2008, September 16, 2009, July 8, 2010, September 22, 2011, and March 22, 2012 entitled, respectively, "Cecil, Pennsylvania, Police Officer Summarily Executes Family's Beloved Ten-Year-Old Persian, Elmo," "Acting Solely Upon the Lies of a Cat-Hater, Raymore Police Pump Two Shotgun Blasts into the Head of Nineteen-Year-Old Declawed and Deaf Tobey," "North Carolina State Trooper Who Illegally Trapped and Shot His Next-Door Neighbor's Cat, Rowdy, Is Now Crying for His Job Back," "Neanderthaloid Politicians in Lebanon, Ohio, Wholeheartedly Sanction the Illegal and Cold-Blooded Murder of Haze by a Trigger-Happy Cop," and "In Another Outrageous Miscarriage of Justice, Rogue Cop Jonathan N. Snoddy Is Let Off with a $50 Fine for Savagely Bludgeoning to Death an Injured Cat.")

On the positive side of the ledger, they do not have much to fear from firemen because they are too lazy to even rescue those that get stranded in trees and on utility poles, let alone to do anything more malicious to them. (See Cat Defender post of March 20, 2008 entitled "Bone-Lazy, Mendacious Firefighters Are Costing the Lives of Both Cats and Humans by Refusing to Do Their Duty.")

In Krümel's case, a far greater concern is that she will be stolen by someone who truly believes that Herold is neglecting her. That is what happened to seventeen-year-old Slim from Ottawa in 2007. As far as it is known, he never was returned to his owners, Michel Giroux and Tanya Guay. (See Cat Defender post of July 9, 2007 entitled "Hungry and Disheveled Cat Named Slim Is Picked Up Off the Streets of Ottawa by Rescuer Who Refuses to Return Him to His Owners.")

A very similar fate nearly befell Richard Smith's seventeen-year-old cat, Tazzy, in Melksham, Wiltshire, earlier this year. (See Cat Defender post of June 26, 2012 entitled "A Family in Wiltshire Turns to Social Media and Leaflets in Order to Shame a Veterinary Chain and a Foster Parent into Returning Tazzy.")
One of the Hotel Garni Herold's More Illustrious Guests

By far and away, however, the greatest threat to Krümel's continued well-being comes from motorists. Even more alarmingly, this is a fear that Herold is fully cognizant of but yet, for whatever reason, steadfastly refuses to do anything about eliminating.

"Wenn sie einmal liegt, dann liegt sie und steht für nichts und niemanden mehr auf," she confided to Der Westen in the August 22nd article cited supra. "Off schläft sie mitten auf der Kleinen Weilstraße und die Autofahrer müssen um sie herumkurven."

For Herold to allow Krümel to unwittingly place her fragile life in mortal danger day after day is not only insane but irresponsible as well. Cats should not be allowed to venture out into traffic under any circumstances. There simply are too many cat-haters who get their perverted kicks by running them down.

In Plymouth, Devonshire, Casper made quite a name for himself a few years back by riding the bus all by his lonesome. All the good times ended abruptly, however, when he was run down and killed by a hit-and-run motorist.

His owner, Susan Finden, got a book deal out of that tragic turn of events and most likely that was the important thing as far as she was concerned. (See Cat Defender posts of August 27, 2009 and January 30, 2010 entitled, respectively, "Casper Treats Himself to an Unescorted Tour Around Plymouth Each Morning Courtesy of the Number Three Bus" and "Casper Is Run Down and Killed by a Hit-and-Run Taxi Driver While Crossing the Street in Order to Get to the Bus Stop.")

Not too far away in Bridport, Dorset, Fee James has placed the life of her fifteen-year-old cat, Dodger, in grave jeopardy by callously allowing him to follow in Casper's ill-fated footsteps. (See Cat Defender post of January 25, 2012 entitled "The Innocence of the Lambs: Unaware of the Dangers That Threaten His Very Existence, Dodger Charms Commuters on the Bridport to Charmouth Line.")

The sign that Herold has erected may thwart the designs of both the authorities and busybodies but it, like implanted microchips, will do absolutely nothing in order to protect Krümel against the evil intentions of motorists. If she truly values Krümel's life, she immediately will rectify her past mistakes by keeping a closer eye on her.

Above all, she must keep Krümel out of the street. Since she obviously has plenty of money, it would not kill her to install some cat fencing. Inside the enclosure she could provide Krümel with a winterized shelter, food, water, and toys.

Since cats are allotted such terribly brief sojourns upon this earth it is a crime for any of their time to be cut short by even so much as a minute. In Krümel's case, she deserves nothing less than to be afforded the opportunity to live out the remainder of her golden years in a safe and secure environment. The very last thing that she needs is to end up like Casper.

Photos: Udo Kreikenbohm of Der Westen (Krümel), Der Westen (Krümel and Herold), Hotel Garni Herald (entrance to the inn), and Svenja Hanusch of Der Westen (fox).

Friday, September 07, 2012

Peripatetic Helvin Rides to the Rescue of Harrisonburg Police Sergeant Russell Metcalf and in Doing So Puts the Judicial Stamp of Approval on His Gunning Down of Sadie


Sadie


"I don't think he should be a police officer or carry a gun."
-- Bryan Ware

Officers of the Harrisonburg Police Department (HPD) now can kill dogs as well as cats without fear of ever being punished by judges. That was the message that resonated loud and clear from Rockingham County General District Court on August 23rd when fifty-year-old Sergeant Russell Metcalf was let off scot-free for gunning down an eight-month-old border collie-mix named Sadie on April 3rd.

Although presiding judge Steven Helvin did find him guilty of one charge of misdemeanor animal cruelty and one count of recklessly discharging a firearm, he turned around and just as quickly negated even that by meting out to him a sixty-day suspended jail sentence and a proscription against owning any domestic animals for six months.

It is highly unlikely that the latter mandate is going to cost Metcalf any sleepless nights because he is anything but a lover of animals. He is not destined to feel any pain in the wallet either because he was not fined so much as a solitary sou. Additionally, there is absolutely nothing in the record to even remotely suggest that he was ordered to pay any court costs.

The only expense that he might be forced to pay would be his attorney's fee since he was off-duty at the time of the shooting but even that is questionable. After all, the HPD takes real good care of its officers no matter what crimes they commit.

On September 6th, Metcalf's attorney filed an appeal in Rockingham County Circuit Court and the case is scheduled to be heard at 9 a.m. on September 10th. Previously convicted cops attempting to clear their names always receive prompt service from Virginia's ever obliging judicial system. During the meantime, he remains on desk duty where he was relegated following his arrest on May 18th.

As far as his future as a cop is concerned, all that the HPD is willing to admit is that it is conducting yet still another of its secretive internal investigations. Even bigmouthed Chief of Police Stephen Monticelli has been uncharacteristically silent so far.

After Officer Jonathan N. Snoddy had his earlier conviction for savagely bludgeoning to death an injured cat reversed on appeal July 30th, Monticelli was positively bubbling over in his effusive praise of him. More than likely he is biding his time until Metcalf's conviction is thrown out by either an obliging judge or prosecutor on September 10th before doing likewise for him. (See Cat Defender posts of August 23, 2012, April 26, 2012, and March 22, 2012 entitled, respectively, "Cat-Killing Cop Jonathan N. Snoddy Struts Out of Court as Free as a Bird Thanks to a Carefully Choreographed Charade Concocted by Virginia's Despicable and Dishonest Legal System," "Virginia's Disreputable Legal and Political Establishment Is All Set to Acquit Jonathan N. Snoddy at His Retrial for Brutally Beating to Death an Injured Cat," and "In Another Outrageous Miscarriage of Justice, Rogue Cop Jonathan N. Snoddy Is Let Off with a $50 Fine for Savagely Bludgeoning to Death an Injured Cat.")

The particulars of this disturbing case are not only gruesome but they additionally furnish a rare glimpse into the types of irreparably flawed personalities that this society entrusts to carry guns and to supposedly enforce the laws. It also should prompt any thinking person to reconsider just exactly who are the bad guys.

On the day of the incident Metcalf was out riding his bicycle on Robinson Road in the Clover Hill section of town when Sadie ran out into the road. According to the testimony of two eyewitnesses, Metcalf turned on her and shot her in the head from a range of approximately five feet. The witnesses further have stated that he killed her without provocation because she was not threatening him in any way.

After he shot Sadie, Metcalf did a runner but was chased down by an unidentified neighbor in his truck. "I thought he (sic) was going to bite me," Metcalf told the man who then, inexplicably, allowed him to continue on his way without obtaining either his name and address or, apparently, even telephoning the police.

For his part, Metcalf never reported the shooting even after it was picked up by the local media. Every bit as importantly, if the gun that he used was his service revolver and that usually is sufficient cause in order to get a cop fired from a legitimate police force.
Amanda M. Wiseley

Exactly how much the HPD knew and what, if anything, that it did in order to apprehend Sadie's murderer never has been publicly clarified. Under normal circumstances, this case would have fallen within its jurisdiction but, for undisclosed reasons, the investigation was turned over to the Rockingham County Sheriff's Office (RCSO).

That inquiry picked up momentum when one of the eyewitnesses, most likely the man who ran Metcalf to ground, picked out his ugly mug from a photographic display. Press reports have not broached the subject but if a necropsy was performed on Sadie it is likely that pathologists were able to recover the bullet that killed her. They in turn may have been able to then determine that the projectile was fired from a weapon issued to an HPD officer and possibly even Metcalf himself.

All of this routine police work could have been expeditiously performed by the HPD but, as it has demonstrated in the past, it is totally unwilling to investigate crimes committed by its officers. In Snoddy's case, for example, the department stonewalled the inquiry until the Virginia State Police were forced to intervene and arrest him.

Armed with at least one eyewitness's positive identification of him, Doug Miller of the RCSO traveled to Metcalf's residence in nearby Dayton on May 1st in order to interview him. "I can't help you there," the suspect reportedly responded when he was asked about the shooting.

After Miller informed him that he had been identified as the murderer, Metcalf quickly realized that the game was up and reluctantly owned up to his cowardly and heinous crime. As difficult as it may be to believe, even that was insufficient in order to prompt the RCSO to arrest him.

That took the appointment of special prosecutor Amanda McDonald Wiseley of Shenandoah County by an unidentified judge sitting on either Rockingham County General District Court or the Circuit Court. Even then it took her until May 18th to finally make up her mind that a crime indeed had been committed. (See Cat Defender post of July 18, 2012 entitled "The Bloodthirsty and Lawless Harrisonburg Police Follow Up Their Bludgeoning to Death of an Injured Cat by Gunning Down a Collie Named Sadie.")

That scenario differs only slightly from the one concocted earlier this year by Virginia's legal establishment in order to excuse Snoddy's horrendous crime. At his first trial in District Court on March 8th he was prosecuted with all the ferocity of a doting parent by Cristable Opp of the county prosecutor's office.

For his appeal, the Virginia State Bar intervened and ordered the appointment of a special prosecutor and Judge James V. Lane of the Circuit Court appointed Kenneth Lee Alger III of Page County to handle that case. Alger, however, had other ideas and categorically refused to do his job and as a consequence Snoddy walked out of court uncontested as a free man on July 30th.

Once he finally took the stand in his defense Metcalf, not unexpectedly, claimed that he had killed Sadie in self-defense. "They (Sadie and another unidentified dog) both seemed to be running full speed right at me," he told the court according to the account of the proceedings rendered in the Daily News-Record of Harrisonburg on August 24th. (See "Officer Guilty of Animal Cruelty.") "He (sic) was a fraction of a second from my right leg."

Even that account of what transpired is flatly contradicted by at least two eyewitnesses. Specifically, they both testified under oath that the second dog never left its yard. They surely must be telling the truth because if it had gotten anywhere near trigger-happy Metcalf it likely would have suffered the same cruel fate as Sadie.

Metcalf furthermore testified that he would have used pepper spray on Sadie but was unable to get the canister out of his pocket. Without getting into the advisability of using pepper spray on a dog, it might be recalled that Snoddy testified at his first trial that it took him innumerable attempts, somewhere between sixteen and nineteen, in order to close the collapsible night stick that he used in order to beat the stuffing out of the injured cat.

In all likelihood both officers simply are outrageous liars and not very good ones at that in spite of all the instruction that they have received in the art of prevarication and shading of the truth from the police academies that they have attended. Even if against all odds they should be relating a semblance of the truth, their gross ineptitude in such mundane matters does not speak highly of the quality of training that they have received from the HPD.

Metcalf's case also is weakened by the simple fact that this is not the first time that he has been in trouble with the law. For instance, on February 9, 2002 he punched Griffin Strother Jr. in the face while making a routine arrest of one of his companions.

The Lord of Many Courtrooms, Steven Helvin

Strother in turn sued him in federal court but lost in 2003. (See popehat.com, May 26, 2012, "Where Are They Now? Russell Metcalf Edition.")

During his closing arguments Metcalf's attorney, Aaron Cook, made an impassioned and, ultimately successful, appeal for his client's innocence. "Does a man have to have a chunk taken out of him before he does something?" he asked rhetorically according to the account in the Daily News- Record. "I hope the answer from this court is no. It's certainly not a crime what he did."

Sadie's owner, forty-six-year-old Bryan Ware, lamely attempted to put a positive spin on a disastrous outcome. "It was such a senseless act," he told the Daily News-Record in the article cited supra. "We feel like we got some justice for Sadie."

Sadly, the only thing that he has received from the HPD, RCSO, Wiseley, and Helvin is a snow job. Sadie was brutally murdered before her life had much even begun and, worst of all, she is not coming back.

The only recourse left open to Ware would be a civil suit against Metcalf and the HPD. Such an undertaking would be a long and expensive slog but hopefully he will be willing to go at least one more mile for her sake.

By contrast, the cat bludgeoned to death by Snoddy did not have a guardian either to seek justice for it or even to bury its remains. That is one more reason why Ware should not let his matter die. One way or another, the HPD should be held accountable for both killings.

"It doesn't give you the right to shoot a dog just because it's in the road," Wiseley told the court according to the Daily News-Record. "He (Metcalf) was not in any physical danger."

Although she has made all the correct public pronouncements, there is considerable reason to suspect her sincerity. Press reports do not delve into the matter but it does not appear that she prosecuted the case very vigorously. In particular, she should have insisted upon jail time and a substantial fine for Metcalf.

Much more importantly, since Helvin has a long history of not only failing to punish animal abusers but is a self-professed lover of cops, she should have demanded from the very start that another jurist be assigned to try the case. Since there are not any secrets in legal circles, her failure to have done so makes it appear that she was in on the fix right from the outset to allow Metcalf to escape justice.

For example, during Snoddy's first trial he shouted his prejudices loud and clear from the bench for one and all to hear. "It is difficult for a judge to second-guess law enforcement," he declared before letting Snoddy off with a measly $50 fine. "He (Snoddy) doesn't deserve to go to jail."

Earlier on August 22, 2006, he let off used car dealer George A. Seymour Jr. of the affluent Bentivar subdivision outside of Charlottesville with an inconsequential ten-day jail sentence and an unspecified amount of community service for shooting and killing Klaus Wintersteigner's cat, Carmen. It is by no means certain, however, that Seymour spent either any time incarcerated or fulfilled the community service requirement. (See Cat Defender post of June 22, 2006 entitled "Used Car Dealer in Virginia Murders Sweet Three-Year-Old Cat Named Carmen with Rifle Shot to the Neck.")

The Moonshiner and His Wife Following Their Arrests

On May 7th of this year and while sitting on the bench in Nelson County General District Court in Lovington, Helvin convicted seventy-one-year-old David Tracy Davis of 142 Rooster Ridge Road in Roseland of fourteen counts of animal cruelty and his sixty-one-year-old wife, Joyce, of fifteen additional such charges. Twenty-eight of them involved dogs while the remaining charge concerned an abused pig.

Helvin sentenced them to sixty days in jail on each charge and banned them from owning any domestic animals for two years. As he did with Metcalf, he then turned around and suspended all of the jail time. So, in the end, the only thing that their abhorrent crimes cost them was $23 in court costs.

All totaled, fifty dogs, two pigs, eleven chickens, nine ducks, one rabbit, two horses, and numerous guinea hens were discovered at the Davis's residence during a November 21, 2011 raid conducted by the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC), the United States Department of Agriculture, and nine additional state and federal agencies. Both Mark Scott, an undercover agent with the ABC, and veterinarian Rachel Touroo later testified in court that the animals were malnourished and dehydrated.

During his visits to the residence, Scott saw a dead puppy, dogs fighting over deer carcasses, feces all over the place, dogs that were lying motionless, and others than were experiencing breathing difficulties. After examining the animals, Touroo concluded that many of them were suffering from, inter alia, plaque, missing teeth, gingivitis, rapid heart rates, infections, fevers, injured legs, blindness, and tumors.

The only shelters provided for the dogs consisted of fifty-gallon plastic barrels. (See The Nelson County Times, March 20, 2012, "Moonshine, Firearms Charges Certified Against Nelson County Man.")

In deciding to let the Davises get away scot-free with their wholesale neglect and abuse of these animals, Helvin deliberately chose to ignore the eyewitness testimonies of Scott and Touroo in favor of that of Nelson County Animal Control Officer Sandy Solar who averred that not only were the dogs' shelters adequate but that she had seen between seven-hundred and one-thousand pound bags of dog food lying in a storage shed. As Helvin knows only too well, the presence of food on the premises and feeding animals are two entirely different matters.

For example, when the police raided the Cats With No Name sanctuary at 33 Walmer Lane in Pine Grove, Pennsylvania, in January of 2010 they, too, found a storage shed chock-full of cat food. They also found one-hundred-twenty-eight cats without food, water, heat, litter boxes, and veterinary care. At least eighty of them already either were dead or later were killed off by the authorities.

The operators of the sanctuary, Virginia Kresge Justiniano and Andy J. Oxenrider, were selling the cat food that had been donated to them in order to purchase drugs. Much like the Davises, they later were let off  with probation, minuscule fines, restitution, and community service by a pair of mindless Pennsylvania judges. (See Cat Defender post of May 10, 2010 entitled "Lunatic Rulings in Cats With No Name Cruelty Cases Proves Once Again That Pennsylvania Is a Safe Haven for Cat Killers and Junkies.")

"It's not always a clear case (of abuse), but it was clear to me that this was neglect," Helvin stated in his opinion according to the report of the proceedings contained in The Nelson County Times on May 9th. (See "Roseland Couple Sentenced for Animal Cruelty.") "The animal doesn't distinguish what is intentional and what is neglect. However, the law does and this is more of a neglect case."

Prosecuting attorney Anthony Martin called attention to the dogs' numerous infections as well as Scott's testimony that he not only had seen Davis kick a dog but that he had confessed to him that a good dog does not need to be fed. "There's no excuse for these animals to have softball-sized tumors or infections running out their noses," he argued according to The Nelson County Times.

Although Martin did ask the court to send both defendants to jail, his sincerity in doing so is called into question by his allowing Helvin to hear the case in the first place. Like Wiseley, he knew well beforehand that Helvin does not punish animal abusers and that alone makes his arguments sound disingenuous.
Angelo M. Stango

Just as he cried a river after fining Snoddy a paltry $50 for his heinous crime, Helvin likewise was all broken up about banning the Davises from owning any domestic animals for two years. "It was very difficult," he said of the order according to May 9th edition of The Nelson County Times.

The farcical nature of Helvin's opinion is brought into sharper focus by the fact that the elder Davis was not only abusing domestic animals but wildlife as well. For instance, he was killing black bears for their gallbladders and redtailed hawks for their talons. He additionally was raising and selling fighting cocks as well as distributing marijuana.

All of that led to his arrest by the feds and subsequent guilty pleas on June 18th. For killing black bears he is eligible for five years in jail and a $20,000 fine while killing hawks could cost him six-months in jail and a $15,000 fine. The cockfighting charge is worth up to five years in the slammer and a $250,000 fine while the pot charge could land him in jail for a year and cost him up to $100,000. He, of course, will not receive anything even remotely close to the maximum sentence on any of the charges but he possibly could end up spending at least some time in jail and his wallet is almost certain to take a substantial dent.

"With today's guilty plea, Mr. Davis admitted to his participation in a crime spree that included trafficking in poached animal parts, breeding and selling fighting birds, and the distribution of illegal drugs," United States Attorney for the Western District of Virginia Timothy J. Heaphy said in a June 18th press release. (See "Nelson County Man Pleads Guilty to Animal Fighting, Bear Poaching, Wildlife, and Marijuana Offenses.") "The United States Department of Justice will continue to do whatever possible to protect our natural resources like wild animals. When people illegally kill animals to obtain and sell parts or raise fighting animals, we will pursue them vigorously."

That certainly is refreshing to hear after listening to Helvin and his cronies perform legal and verbal somersaults in order to shield the guilty from punishment. The proof, as always, is in the pudding and for there to be any substance to Heaphy's  rhetoric Davis and others like him must be incarcerated.

Virginia's attorney general and announced Republican candidate for governor in 2013, Kenneth Thomas Cuccinelli, was quick to endorse Heaphy's sentiments. "Not only was Mr. Davis's behavior illegal and dangerous, it also was inhumane and cruel," he stated in the same press release cited supra. "He profited from the exploitation of poached game and illegal animals, and left a tragic mark on one of the most beautiful parts of the commonwealth."

That is all well and good as far as it goes but if Cuccinelli really cared about animals he would use the power of his office in order to discipline inveterate rotters like Helvin, Alger, Lane, and the remainder of their colleagues who steadfastly refuse to take animal cruelty seriously. Also, his vociferous opposition to the Environmental Protection Agency's efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions gives a hollow ring to his comments about protecting Mother Earth.

In between his appearances in Nelson County District Court and federal court, Davis was in Nelson County Circuit Court on May 8th where he pled guilty to four charges of making and selling moonshine and possessing illegal firearms. For those infractions he was sentenced to five years in jail but the unidentified presiding judge suspended all of that except for ninety days which Davis was scheduled to have begun serving on May 24th.

He additionally was placed on probation for ten years and ordered to pay court costs totaling $1,717. (See The Nelson County Times, May 16, 2012, "Roseland Man Pleads Guilty.")

Since Davis freely admitted to undercover agent Scott that he had been brewing and selling moonshine ever since he was fourteen-years-old, it is a good bet that he has been systematically abusing and killing companion animals, livestock, and wildlife for at least that long. Under such circumstances it is simply stupefying that Helvin would not punish him.

The only positive thing that can be said about his jurisprudence is that in steadfastly refusing to punish cops and civilians alike he at least is consistent. Nevertheless, he is consistently on the wrong end of the law.

NYPD Cop Guns Down Star as Leah Stankiewics Writhes in Pain

After sitting on the bench of Albemarle General District Court in Charlottesville for twenty-one years, Helvin supposedly retired in 2001 so that he could spend more time fishing in the Florida Keys and listening to Jimmy Buffet on his stereo. If he had remained true to his original intentions all animals in Virginia would be far better off today, but the additional shekels on top of his generous pension obviously proved to be too much of a sweetheart deal for a greedy bugger like him to forgo. (See The Hook of Charlottesville, December 5, 2002, "Judge This: Hizzoner Helvin's Gone Fishing.")

It would be deleterious enough if Helvin were an isolated case but, regrettably, his utter disdain for animals and their inalienable rights is pretty much the norm with jurists throughout Virginia and elsewhere. Furthermore, it is not only cops that they give special considerations to but ex-soldiers as well.

For example on July 20th, V. Thomas Forehand Jr., chief judge of Chesapeake Circuit Court, allowed twenty-seven-year-old ex-Marine Angelo Michael Stango of the 8600 block of Glen Myrtle Avenue in Norfolk to get away with strangling the life out of his black and white cat last October 16th. Specifically, all the punishment that Forehand meted out to him was thirty days in jail, a $2,500 fine, $273 in court costs, and ten years of unsupervised probation.

In dispensing that ridiculously lenient sentence, Forehand said that he was attempting to balance the good that Stango had done while in the marines with his killing of his cat. "I find him guilty of misdemeanor (as opposed to criminal animal cruelty)," he ruled according to the account in The Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk on July 21st. (See "Man Gets Thirty Days for Chesapeake Cat Strangling.") "That's not to diminish what he's done."

If ever a ludicrous statement were uttered that would have to be it. To allow this monster to get away with killing a cat simply because he once was a soldier most assuredly not only condones his crime but sends a loud and unmistakable message that feline life is of little value and therefore unworthy of the protection of the courts.

Just as Helvin is madly in love in cops and believes that they can do no wrong, Forehand thinks likewise about soldiers. In reality, both groups of professionals are little more than trained killers and as such are hardly deserving of either the law's forbearance or the public's esteem.

From even so much as a cursory examination of these cases certain patterns are readily discernible. First and foremost, there is the perennial problem of prosecutors who either will not prosecute or, if they do so, it is only half-heartedly.

Secondly, there is the dilemma of judges who will not convict and, on those rare occasions when they do, they adamantly refuse to punish. Despite the well-establishment fact that judges are not any more intelligent, impartial, honest, and just than most ordinary citizens, some of them egomaniacally believe that their jaundiced jurisprudence should be beyond all reproach and criticism.

"What is not appropriate or helpful, however, are personal, ad hominen attacks that suggest that judges are biased, uninformed or unsuited for the bench," Jonathan Lippman, chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, scribbled in a thoroughly self-serving piece of drivel for the print edition of the New York Daily News on July 17th. (See "Stop Attacking New York Judges.") "These attacks are deeply unfair, both to the individual judges involved and the judiciary as an institution."

All of that would have been dishonest and outrageous enough but he did not stop there but went on to condemn all criticism of government. "Attacks of this nature, whether directed at the judiciary or any public institution, threaten the very credibility of government as a whole. When that happens, we all lose."

Chewie with Ronald and Giselle Estevez

That is pure baloney! Au contraire, democracy, equality under law, free expression, and the rights of free men everywhere cease to exist when citizens choose to remain silent, tolerate corruption and, above all, allow elected and appointed officials, such as Lippman, to both abuse their powers and to talk sottise.

Besides as Lippman knows only too well but never would publicly admit, the law primarily reflects the interests and biases of those individuals and groups that comprise the establishment. "We are a constitution, but the Constitution is what the judges say it is," Charles Evans Hughes, who later was destined to become chief justice of the United States Supreme Court, said May 3, 1907 during a speech in Elmira, New York.

Judges accordingly should be evaluated on the basis of their sense of justice, integrity, wisdom, and foresight. Any halfway decent jurist is more than willing to play by those rules and, unlike Lippmann, does not believe that he is latter-day Napoleon.

Thirdly, those groups whose job it is to protect the rights of animals limit their involvement to declarations of moral outrage and offers of minuscule reward money for information leading to the arrests of abusers. Worst still,  they quite often assist abusers in evading justice.

Internal police investigations of officers accused of abusing and killing animals, outside inquiries conducted by sister law enforcement agencies, the appointment of special prosecutors, and the intervention of state bar associations are little more than superficial public relations ploys designed to hoodwink the public into believing that something serious is being done in order to combat animal cruelty. To sum it all up, the entire legal apparatchik is heavily weighted toward the protection of abusers and the perpetuation of a status quo where it is open season year in and year out on all animals.

Since legal precedent is so very important to both judges and prosecutors alike, the most probable outcome of Metcalf's appeal is that he, like Snoddy, will be completely exonerated and returned to active duty with the HPD. The only suspense surrounds who will prosecute. Wiseley could be called upon again in order to serve as the legal establishment's designated flunky or the Virginia State Bar very well could intervene and appoint another bum like Alger in order to purposefully scuttle the entire affair.

Even if against all odds Metcalf should lose in Circuit Court, it is a sure thing that the HPD will allow him to retire with a full pension. After all, he has been with the department for twelve years and recently underwent heart surgery.

Ware, however, does not have a doubt in his mind as to what should be done with him. "I don't think he should be a police officer or carry a gun," he told the Daily News-Record in the article cited supra.

His neighbors are to be commended not only for tracking down Metcalf but for their willingness to testify against him in court. The same most definitely cannot be said for local humane groups who steadfastly have refused to rally to Sadie's cause. Worst still, they more than likely will assist Metcalf in evading justice by permitting him to perform make-believe voluntary work at one of their shelters, just like the Rockingham-Harrisonburg SPCA did for Snoddy earlier this year.

It is a sad indictment of the law enforcement community, but Metcalf's murder of Sadie was far from being an isolated incident. For instance, on August 13th a homeless immigrant by the name of Leah Stankiewicz went into an epileptic seizure at the corner of Second Avenue and East Fourteenth Street in Manhattan.

In keeping with their time-honored tradition of physically abusing the poor, officers of the New York Police Department (NYPD) arrived on the scene and began kicking him. In an effort to defend her owner, a pit bull named Star intervened and was rewarded for her loyalty and valor with a bullet in the left eye.

"Instead of calling the ambulance, they (the policemen), started kicking him (Stankiewicz)," area resident Aida Feliciano told the print edition of the New York Daily News on August 14th. (See "Shot Trying to Save His Master.") "The dog was just defending his owner, and the cops shot it in the head," delicatessen clerk Ines Pauling added.

NYPD Cops Kill Darrius H. Kennedy in Crowded Times Square

At first it was reported that Star had died but, miraculously, she is still alive. (See New York Daily News, August 26, 2012, "Dog Shot in Head by NYPD Officer in East Village Making Speedy Recovery: Official.")

Her prognosis has not been disclosed but it is likely that she has lost her left eye. Also, she recently was  handed over to the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals and apparently will not be reunited with Stankiewicz.

The truly important thing, however, is that she apparently is going to live and for that she can thank dog lovers and others for donating more than $10,000 toward her care. Stankiewicz was taken to Bellevue Hospital and also is still alive but other than that little is known about either his condition or prospects.

It would be comforting to believe that in a city as large and as wealthy as New York that someone would be willing to provide him and Star with either an apartment or a house where they would have an opportunity in order to rebuild their shattered lives, but that is wishful thinking. In the land of the dollar bill, however, not having money is tantamount to a capital offense and beating up on the powerless is every bit as American as apple pie.

At the very least, some lawyer should make either himself or herself useful for a change by doing a little pro bono work and bringing a multimillion-dollar lawsuit against the NYPD for kicking Stankiewicz and, above all, gunning down Star. While it is perhaps too much to ask that Americans have much in the way of sympathy for the poor and dogs, nevertheless the police should not be allowed under any circumstances to either abuse or harm them in any manner whatsoever.

In October of 2010, narcotics agents of the NYPD stormed the third-floor Bronx apartment of Ronald and Giselle Estevez in a botched drug raid. When the couple's five-year-old, seven-pound miniature Doberman-Pomerian-mix Chewie had the temerity to bark at one of them he hit him so hard that he was sent sprawling four feet across the room and out a window.

Luckily, Chewie's twenty-five-foot descent was broken by grass instead of concrete and he survived with only unspecified injuries to his right paw. To this day, however, he remains so traumatized by the ordeal to even jump down from a couch.

Last autumn, the Estevezes filed a lawsuit against the cops in Bronx Civil Court alleging that they were falsely arrested and that the officers stole $1,200 in cash, a gold bracelet, and assorted documents from them. (See New York Post, October 24, 2011, "Cop Slapped Dog Out Third Story Window: Suit.")

It is not merely dogs that increasingly are finding themselves in the crosshairs of trigger-happy officers of the NYPD but individuals as well. For example, on August 11, they gunned down and killed Darrius H. Kennedy at crowded Times Square. Although he was wielding a knife, no evidence has been produced that he ever used the weapon on anyone.

Later on August 24th, they gunned down fifty-eight-year-old Jeffrey Johnson outside the Empire State Building shortly after he had settled an old score with a former co-worker by shooting him to death. In taking down Johnson, the cops also shot and wounded nine innocent bystanders.

In both cases, neither of the suspects posed an imminent threat to others and therefore could have been trailed at a safe distance by the police to less crowded locations and then, hopefully, apprehended without the use of lethal force. Despite callously endangering the lives of scores of bystanders, Mayor Mike "Dirty Bloomers" Bloomberg has angrily defended the cops involved in both cases. (See New York Daily News, August 29, 2012, "Cop Shot Has Bloom Popping Off.")

Psychologists, sociologists, and others often point out that a causal link exists between cruelty to animals and crimes perpetrated against individuals but they are loath to extend that logic to include members of the establishment, such as cops, politicians, Animal Control officers, shelters, wildlife biologists, ornithologists, and others. What they are so unwilling to admit is that disrespect for life, whether it be animal or human, is in no way ameliorated by either the size of a killer's wallet or his position within society's perverted pecking order.

If the truth dare be told, it is always those who wield power that are by far and away the biggest crooks and killers within any society. Accordingly, the first and foremost duty of any citizen is to make certain that those individuals and groups are held accountable under the law and subservient to the will of the people; anything less can only be labeled as tyranny.

Photos: WCAV-TV of Charlottesville (Sadie), Facebook (Wiseley), Jen Fariello of The Hook (Helvin), WVIR-TV of Charlottesville (David and Joyce Davis), Gothamist (NYPD officer shooting Star), Martin McDermott of the New York Post (Chewie with Ronald and Giselle Estevez), and Daily Mail and the Associated Press (NYPD Officers gunning down Kennedy).