Yucca Valley, Ca.- Dear Readers of Cactus Thorns, you have been asking for more information about the Yucca Valley animal shelter post and rightfully so. Branson was recruited at the last moment to join the team of legal minds to review the 100′s of pages of court documents and conducting personal interviews with witnesses to confirm the information.
True, there was a delay in posting the stories because the authors were certain to”get it right,” due to the thinly veiled threat of a legal suit by Yucca Valley Town Manager, Mark Nuaimi, to one of the investigative reporters on her Facebook page. I was the courier of these docements, personally transferring the originals to the recipients in the middle of the night.
This post will answer some the criticism towards Branson for implying he was withholding the other side of the story. His take of his story, by choice, was to bring the family to the foreground giving the readers a face to the name while pointing out the public relations nightmare brought to the Town of Yucca Valley under the leadership of Mayor Dawn Rowe and her Town Manager, Mark Nuaimi.
Here are some highlights of the post by Sharon Gilbert, Examiner reporter and animal rights advocate after her review of the court documents and the link to her story:
“Dakota and Blaze are owned by James “JR” Lovell, a veteran who served a short stint in the military towards the end of the Vietnam War. Also part of the family is JR’s girlfriend, Angela, and son, Chuck. All three are totally disabled, Chuck having Downs Syndrome and Angela having suffered a stroke during the ongoing battle with the town’s Code Enforcement Department.”
“An elderly woman was walking by JR’s home when Blaze got out of the yard. The woman panicked and at some point fell down.
Animal control’s version of the story is that both Blaze and Dakota jumped on the woman, knocked her to the ground, mauled the woman and bit various parts of her body. The witness’ version is that only Blaze was involved and nipped at her once but he was not allowed to provide that testimony in court. Dakota who was in JR’s truck with the witness only entered the scene as others were trying to help the downed woman and did not participate in the attack.
The woman was taken home at her request and paramedics were called. Paramedics suggested she contact her personal physician. The Sheriff’s Department was called but no report was taken.
The only medical treatment verified in court records provided is that she was given a tetanus shot. There is no indication that she was treated for bite wounds, that such wounds were irrigated or stitched, or that she was given antibiotics. However, JR does admit Blaze nipped her once in the foot/ankle area.The dogs were both quarantined for 10 days. When JR attempted to pick them up, he was advised that he would not be allowed to do so and that a hearing was being scheduled. The town decided Dakota to be vicious despite no evidence.”
For Gilbert’s complete report click here.
Update: Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Blaze became pregnant while housed with Dakota in the same pen at the Yucca Valley animal shelter since February 2012. She delivered her puppies on the eve of the last day to redeem the two pets for $5,000. She delivered seven puppies but three died despite the notice filed by the family with the town to protect the unborn puppies while in their care,custody and control.
The Yucca Valley Animal Shelter has extended their action for ten days upon review of the insurance requirements placed on the owners for the condition to release the pets. I have written to the Town Manager and legal staff offering to pay for the spay and neuter one of the pets. A citizen of Yucca Valley, after reading of the plight of this family to have their pets returned, has stepped forward as a guarantor of any installment payment plan to resolve this situation.
Margo Sturges Author link here
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