Arrested for Helping Dying Chained Dog
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Arrested for Helping Dying Chained Dog
From Dogs Deserve Better.org
Tammy Grimes, founder of Dogs Deserve Better, was arrested September 11, 2006 for helping a dying chained dog named Doogie who could not stand in East Freedom, Pennsylvania. Below are the details of the case, with photo and video documentation.
Tammy's statement: "I made a hard decision; I could not have lived with myself or looked myself in the eye if I were such a coward as to leave Doogie lying there dying on the ground for fear of what would happen to me. I see this case as a travesty against justice...the true perpetrators of a crime are the people who left Doogie to lie there dying for three days without doing right by him.
I am very saddened that we live in a society where people have to be afraid to do the right thing, to help those in need, whether that need be human or animal. Arrests such as mine are a pitiful statement for America, and I ask all dog lovers to stand with me to insist that all charges against me are dropped and charges of animal cruelty are instead placed against the Arnolds of East Freedom, PA. The Arnolds who left Doogie to die. This video truly speaks for itself, and for Doogie. I did what was morally right; I stand by my decision to help him and will be proud of it until my dying day. No one can take that from me."
Here is the background info:
We got a call from Kim Eicher in East Freedom 9/11/06, crying because Doogie hadn't gotten up since Saturday. She had been calling the Central Pennsylvania Humane Society since Saturday to no avail. We told her we aren't law officers, and she needed to call the Humane Officer. We told her to make sure she left a message, very clearly, about the problem. Then we got another call about the same dog, from another person who passes him every day. At that point we called Kim back to see if she'd heard from the Humane Officer. She had not, was very, very upset and we were very worried about him, so we promised her we'd go out and see what we could do.
When we arrived, we took photos and video of Doogie. We initially thought he was dead, as he was not moving and his back was to us. We found out that the people were not home to talk to about him, so I made the decision that I would not leave him lying there on the cold wet ground for one moment longer, and I would accept all consequences of my decision.
Kim Eicher has agreed to testify as to the animal cruelty perpetrated against Doogie. She cried the whole time we were there, you can hear her on the video.
I think once you see the video and pictures, you'll understand why I made this decision.
The vet documented his general negligent condition, low weight, sores, missing fur, and took x-rays of his back and hips. He determined that he has very bad back spurs that are causing him a lot of pain and are most likely responsible for his inability to walk. He also saw an undetermined mass near his hip on the x-ray. He gave him a shot for pain plus some B vitamins for energy, so that perhaps he could have even one good day or a few good hours. He wrote a letter stating his condition.
As we got to the vet, the CPHS Humane Officer Gotshall was just leaving, and he stopped us. He was about to go out to the residence. When he found out we had Doogie with us, he was not happy. I volunteered to take Doogie back and he could pick him up instead. He refused that, and stated that I should get him the vet care he needed, and to call him afterward on his cell.
When I later called him, he did not answer, I left a message asking him what he wanted me to do with Doogie, he never called back.
Shortly after we got Doogie to my home, situated, bathed—had to, the stench was too bad—and fed and watered an Officer Flaig called from the Freedom Township Police Department (Freedom, isn't that ironic?). He wanted me to return Doogie, which I refused to do. I explained that I had video and photos documenting the animal cruelty, and the neighbor was willing to testify; why didn't he pursue that as they were the perpetrators of the crime, and should be charged? He refused, and was not interested in seeing my evidence.
He and three other police vehicles arrived at my home at approximately 9:30 p.m. As I refused to hand Doogie over to be returned to death on a chain, and would not tell them where he was, I was taken into custody, transported to the East Freedom police office, and charged with theft, receiving stolen property, criminal mischief, and criminal trespass. I was released on $50,000 unsecured bond and ordered to appear at a preliminary hearing September 21, 2006.
I was treated like a common criminal, especially by Chief Reilly, who called me a 'freakin' idiot', 'incompetent', and I overheard him telling Officer Flaig that if I ever came near his dog I would have a slug in my a**. Again, there was no interest in any evidence that the dog had been abused or criminally neglected. As far as they were concerned, the dog's safety or condition was not even an issue.
I was released after seeing Judge Aigner, where Chief Reilly asked that I be not given bail but incarcerated for my failure to cooperate. It was 2:00 a.m., and I had no ride home, over 30 miles away. I had to walk to a local all-night store to call and get a cab, because there was no concern over how I would get home. Their attempt to dehumanize me didn't work. I held my head high and still do. I looked Chief Reilly square in the eye at every opportunity. I will not be broken.
Here's what I need from you all. View the videos and photos. I think you'll agree with me that this is NOT acceptable in ANY way in any kind of civilized society. We cannot allow this kind of animal abuse. Period. Not ifs, ands, or buts. Insist that all charges against Tammy Grimes are dropped and animal cruelty charges are instead filed against the Arnolds of East Freedom, Pennsylvania. Pass along the photos and the video, or a link to it, as much as you possibly can.
Doogie laying on the ground, neighbor crying in background:
Doogie after vet at Grimes house:
I could never look myself in the eye again, much less sleep at night, had I left Doogie there dying, shivering in the dirt.
Please, contact ALL media with these photos and videos. Get justice, for Doogie and for me. Do NOT allow this treatment of those who are here to help, and who actually care. Call the Central Pennsylvania Humane Society and tell them you expect them to stand with me against this kind of abuse, and that you expect them to return phone calls for dying dogs the same day.
Officer Flaig: Cell 814.201.0149 (Apparently cancelled cell phone)
Blair County District Attorney Richard Consiglio, Esq.: 814.693.3010
Freedom Township Police Headquarters: 814.695.8545
Central Pennsylvania Humane Society: 814.942.5402; firstname.lastname@example.org
Humane Officer Paul Gotshall: 814.942.3780
Altoona Mirror: 800.287.4480; email@example.com;
WJAC-TV 6: 814.255.7600
Honorable Craig Ormsby
800 East Main Street
Roaring Spring, PA 16673
Honorable Paula Aigner
311 Union Street
Hollidaysburg, PA 16648
All national media! Make sure to send them links to the video, it's very compelling. Don't stop until there is Justice for Doogie and me! Any help with legal fees to get a competent attorney would be much appreciated.
Tammy S. Grimes
UPDATE: 22 Feb 2008
Tammy Grimes Trial Update
Today Grimes was sentenced to 300 hours community service for a 'people organization', because 'people are dogs too'. She was also ordered to pay for the cost of the trial. This was justified by the judge because she said that Grimes chose to go to trial over ARD, therefore she should have to pay for it. Isn't it every person's right to go to trial? Does that right come with a price tag? Interestingly enough, according to Grimes' attorneys, this is not only NOT OFTEN done, but RARELY done. The costs were around $1700.
She was also ordered within 10 days to take everything Doogie related off any any site she 'has control or influence over'.
[Editor's note: whatever happened to freedom of speech?]
"We [DDB] will be appealing most if not all of the sentencing asap."
The absolute worst part of it all was the way she was treated by both the DA and the judge. The saddest thing is that they actually seem to BELIEVE the horrible things they said about her. They seem to actually BELIEVE that the taking of Doogie was a publicity stunt by Grimes, so that she could be a 'hero'. That the Arnolds are 'victims' of her lies, and that 'the dog was just old'.
The DA said he was shocked this was her first offense, because her disrespect for the law and it's officials is like his worst hardened criminals. He also said that everything on the DDB site is a lie, twisted by Grimes to make people believe her. He was seriously ticked off that the Arnolds received Valentines and a brochure attempting to educate them this Valentine's Day. Yet, at trial he insisted DDB should try to educate them, so which is it? Do you want them educated or not?
She is now again not to have any contact with 'the victims'.
The judge said that Grimes was no Rosa Parks or Martin Luther King, Jr. That she has disgraced herself and her cause, as well as her supporters by her actions. That two wrongs don't make a right. (If she's admitting there were 'two wrongs', then why are the Arnolds still not being convicted of abuse?)
We are saddened by the state of affairs in Blair County, Pennsylvania. Saddened by the people 'in control', and saddened by the beliefs they put out into the world.
Pictures and video do not lie. If it were a he said/she said situation, we could understand how they would believe the Arnolds when they say the dog was just old. But with the abundance of evidence of neglect, there is absolutely NO EXCUSE for the behavior of both DA Richard Consiglio and Judge Elizabeth Doyle. Pictures and video DO NOT LIE.
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