“As far as this crime thing, there was no crime committed,” said Mayor Set-Them-Free of Arkansas to the City Council as they debated a resolution to support the Mayor, who now has a warrant out for his arrest on charges of animal cruelty.
Right. Well sure it’s not a “crime” in the sense of say, detaining hundreds of prisoners indefinitely without trial. (Which is a crime, btw. In case anyone is paying attention.) But it is a “crime” in the sense that it’s a violation of the laws of the state of Arkansas (“cruelty to animals” and “obstructing the prevention of cruelty to animals”) and the federal laws of the United States (abandoning animals on public land). No one, not even Mayor I-Am-Not-A-Criminal, has the right to dump shelter dogs in his city’s care at a National Forest.
The resolution failed to pass because only 4 of 9 members were on board. Kudos to the 5 council members who effectively said “Whaaaaaa?” when asked to vote their support for the resolution.
The Mayor will get his day in court (tentatively set for July 11 in Helena-West Helena District Court) to face the two misdemeanor animal cruelty charges. No word yet on any federal charges. Meanwhile, 4 of the abandoned dogs have been rescued by a recovery team.