This compassionate Augusta couple, Sue and Ray Jones, were criminalized for providing feral cats with water. It’s very strange and on the face of it completely wrong. On their appeal the jury took 15 minutes to decide that the conviction was flawed. The couple’s lawyer said it was the shortest time (s)he had witnessed for a jury to come to a decision. This indicates the flawed nature of the conviction.
However, the legal process put this nice couple through a lot of upset and stress for a year, for what? The prosecution clearly got this very wrong. Sue and Ray were not feeding the cats but providing water. This is an interesting point. It implies that there is an ordinance in Augusta or the county that forbids the feeding of feral cats unless certain conditions are met. There is a similar same ordinance in Fort Oglethorpe, Catoosa County, GA. It seems to be a Georgian concept.
In a previous post I referred to a prosecution for feeding and providing water.
‘There is nothing in the city ordinance prohibiting providing water to animals’, says Sue Jones.
Sue also says that the prosecution presumed that they owned the feral cats. As Sue says, no one owns feral cats (obviously). The ordinance may prohibit the feeding and watering of owned cats in public places but if anyone can provide further details it would be most welcome.
The video below explains it and you get a chance to hear and see Sue Jones explain what happened and she is switched on and compassionate. She wants the local authorities to initiate wide ranging TNR programs to help the feral cats of the area.
Update: The video won’t play because it comes from an site which is not encrypted! I am trying to overcome this.
At present, I cannot find the ordinance to which Sue Jones refers although I believe that it will demand that if somebody feeds a feral cat they have to do other things as well such as sterilize the cat and so on. It has to be part of a program and Sue Jones does work with Friends of Felines KS, which provides TNR services.
My impression is that the original prosecution was misconceived and may have gone wrong because it was presumed that both Ray and Sue Jones were feeding and providing cats with water in a public place which, on the face of it, is a breach of the local ordinance despite the fact that I’ve not seen this particular law. And there was a mistake about feral cat ownership.