Karen Lombardi is an ACO for the town of Woodbridge, CT. She was recently charged with animal cruelty in connection with a November 2012 incident in which she allegedly hurt a dog. The incident was witnessed by two co-workers who reported it to police:
[Kennel worker Karen] Myers told police she was at Woodbridge Animal Control, struggling to outfit [a dog named] Timone in a sweater, when Lombardi came over and said, “I’ll show you how to do that.” Myers said Lombardi then grabbed the dog and slammed it against a wall while screaming, “You hold still or I’ll smash your (expletive) skull in.”
Ms. Lombardi continues to work directly with pets as a town employee:
Woodbridge Police Chief Eugene Marcucci said Tuesday that Lombardi would not face suspension because of the cruelty charge. The Police Department oversees animal control.
If you go back and read the description of the alleged cruelty incident replacing the location with a shelter for people and the dog with a child, I would guess the police would not be so quick to keep the person on the job while the court case proceeds. Why isn’t a temporary reassignment to a position that doesn’t involve hands-on animal care considered appropriate in this case?
Pets are family and should be protected. In fact Ms. Lombardi, charged with cruelty herself, continues to get paid to protect local pets from cruelty. It seems appropriate that she should request a temporary reassignment of duties, even if her superiors aren’t demanding it, for the sake of protecting the integrity of the job (if nothing else). How can the public have faith in animal control when the person accused of smashing a dog against a wall is the one judging whether local pet owners are taking good enough care of their pets?