Cat lovers are disappointed after a Texas veterinarian was given a slap on the wrist today by the Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (TBVMA). Disappointed is really too mild of an emotion. ‘Outrage’ comes closer to the true emotion being heard around the world after Kristen Lindsey was given a very light sentence, considering she willfully killed a cat named Tiger with a bow and arrow back in April 2015.
Click this text to see all previous Kristen Lindsey posts on PoC for background. This is a long saga and it might not be over.
Facebook: Tiger’s Justice Team News posted a statement October 18
“The Board essentially followed the recommendations put forth in the SOAH judges’ Proposal for Decision: a 5 year suspension with one year “down time” (no veterinary employment) and the remaining 4 years fully probated, with quarterly reporting requirements. The Board also moved for continuing education and/or successful completion of an examination in veterinary jurisprudence, and six hours of continuing education in animal welfare. Board members declined the judges’ suggestion that Lindsey perform community service in a veterinary capacity.
Needless to say, this is not the result we hoped for. Those of us who are involved in animal welfare issues have seen many victories and many defeats as we strive to create a more humane world. In spite of our disappointment, today’s decision by the Board is truly a victory, especially given current laws. The Board could have chosen lesser sanctions against Lindsey, or even none at all. Today, the Board sent a clear message that veterinarians who commit acts of cruelty and publicize them will no longer do so with impunity.”
Tiger’s Justice Team News went on to thank those who spoke up on Tiger’s behalf today. In addition to attorney Zandra Anderson and TJT members, representatives from Alley Cat Allies and the Animal Legal Defense Fund addressed the Board in favor of license revocation.
The facebook community page stressed the fight isn’t over, as Kristen Lindsey is expected to appeal the Board’s decision in Travis County District Court. She also has a civil lawsuit against the board and her DWI case in Harris County is still ongoing.
It’s a shame Lindsey may be allowed to resume her career after the one-year down time period is up. Everyone was hoping for at the very least community service. The TBVMA could have done worse and not handed down any punishment at all. One year of down time (no veterinary employment) and four years of additional supervised probation (in which I gather she can practice medicine again) is clearly a slap on the wrist, considering the person she’s shown herself to be since the beginning. Not only did she not care about killing Tiger at the time she shot him, she has since endangered others by drinking and driving.
Was this a fair sentence? What would YOU like to have seen happen? Please sound off in the comments.
All of my Kristen Articles can be found by clicking here.
Comment from Michael (Admin):
Thanks for this Elisa. You know, most people who have followed this saga wanted her to lose her license. She hasn’t but, relatively speaking, she has been quite severely punished (i.e. in comparison to what happens normally). To that official punishment we can add the opprobrium from which she has suffered over the long time this has been in the public eye. I would doubt that her life as a vet will ever be the same even in years hence.
Also, as I read the situation, to force (through public pressure online) the Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (TBVMA) to punish Lindsey is a success, I’d say. They’d probably have done far less without the wonderful effort of the Justice for Tiger volunteers on Facebook and many others who have campaigned for justice. Well done to them all. It was a great effort from the public and campaigners. I think the Board learning a lesson which is that the public want to see fair play and vets punished when they do wrong or behave criminally.
All in all, the outcome is at least a minor success although I agree with Elisa that it is still disappointing.