Thursday, April 22, 2010

Brampton Animal Control wins suckage of the year award

(h/t Ian)

From Brampton Guardian, which I must commend for doing such an excellent job covering this issue, Dog seizures not an isolated case:

Brittany and Rambo are safely home once again, but The Brampton Guardian has learned this isn’t the first time a previously legally licensed dog has been seized from a Brampton home without a warrant, and owner-offered proof that they are not “pitbulls” rejected by city animal shelter workers.

Rocsi, Ruckus and Missus were three dogs seized from two separate families in the past year, and all three ended up in adoptive homes in Newfoundland. Their owners argue the dogs were not pitbulls, they were mixed-breed mutts, but they were never given a chance to prove it and they didn’t have the resources to battle the city in court.

Thank goodness Rui Branco had the wherewithal and the finances to fight the Brampton AC's threats to kill Rambo and Brittany. It's pretty obvious now that this despicable behaviour on the part of BAC has been going on a long while and like a dog that learns to shit in the house and hasn't been shown otherwise, it's become self reinforcing.

One month later, a note appeared taped to Crocker’s door from an ACO (the same ACO who seized Brittany) asking for a spay date, according to Crocker. He had made an appointment, for April, but a telephone call from Shields revealed that wasn’t soon enough, Crocker said.

That’s when Crocker’s mother dropped into the shelter to complain about the tone of the telephone conversation, which she said was confrontational. Within 24 hours, thedogs were seized by police, who accompanied Shields to the door.

“It just seemed to become personal,” Gail Crocker said.

There was no warrant, she added.

“They forcibly took them right off my front porch. Right out of my arms,” she said.

“It was crazy.”

A while ago, I was wondering if the ones who subject others to this anguish were just mindless bureaucrats but now I'm beginning to wonder if they're plain malicious and get off on the power trip of being able to invade people's homes and tear apart their families.

“She was so good. She was the best dog ever,” Gail Crocker said. “There was never any complaint about aggression, or running or charging or biting anyone.”

They were told the dogs would be “put down” if the Crockers did not find a home for them out of province, Gail Crocker said.

Jamie Lowery, the city’s commissioner of community services, defends the actions of BAC by blaming it all on the provincial legislation.

“It’s not the city, it’s the legislation,” he said. “That is clearly the biggest problem we have. That (DOLA) is very vague and ambiguous. It speaks to certain breeds, but it also brings into question about characteristics, so we are charged with (trying) to enforce or interpret the legislation."

And Lowery is right. DOLA is open to interpretation which means that if an animal control officer doesn't want to be a jerk about it, he doesn't have to be. On the other hand, these open ended laws also give stormtrooper wannabes a lot of power to terrorize families.

“I think the net that we do cast is the net of reasonableness and that is, driven by complaints, and driven by the understanding that we as a municipality have some legal obligations to the community with respect to the DOLA legislation. That really is, from my point of view, as commissioner, the bottom line, protecting the community and taking reasonable steps.”

This guy thinks that costing Rui Branco $20000 in legal fees to save his dog's life after it was seized from his home without warrant falls within a "net of reasonableness"?

This guy thinks that taking dogs from their owners and forcing the families to pay shipping costs to exile their pets to other provinces or else the pets face death falls within a "net of reasonableness"?

I think someone is mistaking a net of reasonableness with a sac of bullshit.


Ian said...

I hesitated posting it because you`re sort of semi retired? from blogging.There were comments there when I first saw it so I don`t know what happened to them.

Unknown said...

what would be nice was if some good lawyer stepped up to the plate and helped ALL the owners launch some form of class action suit. WHAT is wrong with not only Brampton animal control but the gvernment?? Why are the constituents ok with this?

Elizabeth said...

From what I've read it sounds like their is one animal conrol officer who has a vendetta against something. I'm not sure if its pit bulls, dogs with blocky heads, or siblings of brittany and rambo but I think its time this offcer is retiered.

I do however know that I will not be passing through Brampton EVER again as I am a dog lover and hate bullshit. I will bypass through the town and spend my money elsewhere.

redstarcafe said...

(This comment has been edited. Sorry, redstarcafe.)

I agree, Selkie. The very least Brampton AC could do is reimburse the Branco's for the legal fees, although for the anguish they suffered during the incarceration ...

Ian said...

Were there other seizures after Rambo and Brittany?
I may be wrong but I get the impression that these other seizures were before Brittany and Rambo even though it doesn`t exactly spell that out.Am I mistaken?Perhaps Brampton has learned from the most recent case?

Anonymous said...

Angela Rodriguez's dog Missus was seized on January 22, 9 days after Brittany and Rambo.


Anonymous said...

Brampon A/C is Out Of Control and the Mayor and City Councillers don't even have to guts to go after a civic employee who is OUT OF CONTROL. How much has this cost Brampton taxpayers? It must be horrific for the Branco's and the Gaspar to know THE very taxes they pay is used against them and other responsible citizens for the sake of a darconian law.

Anonymous said...

there is an election coming do whats right vote all the incumbents out and start fresh

Unknown said...

I can tell you one thing as I live in brampton. If you love your dog.... you DO NOT want to live here. I have never seen such heartless people working for a city. I moved here 5 years ago and have met 3 dogs that have been euthanized. This animal control will jump to euthanizing a dog right away without considering anything. They treat every dog the same regardless of what the situation is. I used to live in Richmond Hill. I lived there for 14 years. Every situation was treated differently. I worked in the animal industry for the last 6 years that I lived there and have never heard of anything going on there like they are here. The animals are actually given a fair chance. In brampton, your dog is considered guilty until proven innocent, and that is if you're lucky enough to be given the chance to prove that. It is disgusing what goes on here.