You may remember Kristen Lindsey’s long-running case. She is infamous. Most people in the cat world know about the killing by her of a cat called Tiger. The public knows the name of the cat that was killed and they know the name of the owners of this cat (Mr and Mrs Johnson).
Tiger was a domestic cat who had a habit of wandering. He wandered onto a property rented by Kristen Lindsey (from a landlord who was a veterinarian) where she killed him with a bow and arrow to the head. They were facing each other. It was close range.
If you need to you can read about Kristen Lindsey please do so by clicking on this link. It is a long running saga.
Lindsey was sanctioned by the veterinary authorities but she did not lose her veterinary license and neither was she prosecuted for a crime. I have before me some statements of the Grand Jury (thanks to positively.com) at which it was decided that she would not face a trial for a crime animal cruelty. I am going to examine the statements.
The first statement that the Grand Jury gave which needs to be examined is as follows:
“If the state could prove an incident did occur in Texas, Texas penal code 42.092 essentially requires the state to prove that either (1) a defendant killed a stray cat in a cruel manner or (2) a defendant killed the cat without the owner’s consent.”
The point to make here is that the defendant killed the cat in a cruel manner. I think we have to take a commonsense approach to that. In addition we can say that the cat was killed without the owner’s consent. The interesting aspect of this is that the owners, we know, have said that they wish no ill to befall Kristen Lindsey.
“[They] wished no ill will against Dr Lindsey” and “had no desire to pursue charges against Dr Lindsey”.
I think the lawyers involved in this case have taken that to mean that they give retrospective consent. Here lies a complication. The lawyers have turned this around somewhat but in truth consent was never given quite obviously.
Another Grand Jury Statement is as follows:
“Investigators were never able to positively confirm the identity of the cat seen in the social media photograph. Although one witness believes the cat to be named Tiger, three different area residents had fed similar looking cats at one time or another that had no collar and had strayed. Evidence was insufficient to positively identify an owner for the cat in the online photograph.”
My comment on this (and I am sure almost everybody else will agree) is that Tiger’s owners are well known. We know that Tiger was a domestic cat. Therefore I cannot understand why the Grand Jury could not come to a more sensible conclusion.
A third Grand Jury statement is as follows:
“The American Veterinary Medical Association guidelines state that physical methods of killing animals such as a gunshot or bolt to the head can be humane when done correctly. When performed properly, the animal may exhibit in voluntary movements but is unaware and unable to experience pain.” (I left out reference to the relevant sections of the AVMA guidelines).
What the Grand Jury is saying is that Tiger was killed humanely. The AVMA themselves were surprised that the Grand Jury statement included reference to them and their euthanasia policy. They were not consulted they say and nor were they asked to provide information regarding the case. They say that the District Attorney’s application of the euthanasia guidelines were seriously flawed.
I think only a fool could decide that Tiger was killed humanely. If that is killing a cat humanely we are turning logic on its head.
The conclusion really on this appraisal is that the Grand Jury came to some rather bizarre conclusions all of which can be undermined and argued again successfully. Their decision is seriously flawed. It is as if the prosecutor went out of his way to find Lindsey not guilty at the Grand Jury stage of proceedings.
The grand jury should have concluded that Kristen Lindsey should have faced a trial for the crime of animal cruelty.
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