Under the deal with the state, the criminal charges against Grant will be dropped if he agrees to take his medication, pay costs to the state attorney’s office and is not arrested within the next 24 months.
Grant’s attorney says the agreement won’t prohibit Grant from owning cats.
“He’s allowed to have animals. He’s allowed to have up to whatever many cats the local County ordinances allow,” said [Mr. Grant’s attorney, David] Collins.
Some context here: ASPCA seized 700 cats and 2 dogs, including Mr. Grant’s personal pets, from Caboodle Ranch and disposed of them as they saw fit. Many were adopted during 3 mass adoption events. I don’t know what happened to the rest of the animals and I suspect the ASPCA will never provide those details.
The ASPCA pads its bank account with nearly $150 million in donations every year and yet had the audacity to file a suit against Mr. Grant seeking “reimbursement” of the $1 million it says was spent caring for the seized cats. How can an organization seek to be “reimbursed” for having spent funds on animal care when the money was donated by animal lovers who thought it would be used to help animals? Check out the ASPCA invoice for expenses which includes a staggering number of flights in and out of Jacksonville, hotel fees, food bills and the following line items:
- 267: $4920.42 for utensils, etc.
- 412: $2048.60 to change light bulbs
- 1173: $18 for vegan cupcakes for shelter workers
And then there are the consulting fees:
- 154: $2000 for 5 days of consultant fees to Katie Flood
- 310: $800 for 2 days of consultant fees for James Brenneman
- 914: $3200 for 2 weeks of consultant fees for Aldo Wilson
- 971: $2800 for 2 weeks of consultant fees for Phree Phillips
- 988: $1000 for 5 days of consultant fees for Joanna Fogarty
- 1005 $1000 for 5 days of consultant fees for Laura MacDougall
- 1026 and 1027: $2800 for 7 days of consultant fees for Tonya Loreman
- 1043: $800 for 2 days of consultant fees for Mary Manspeaker
- 1052: $4400 for 11 days of consultant fees for Elizabeth Maxwell
- 1153: $39,688 estimated consultant fees up to April 30, 2012
I picked out the above entries at random but there are many, many more entries for consultant fees. ASPCA apparently needed a lot of consultants during the months following the seizure. I thought ASPCA folks were supposed to be the experts? I mean, with the amount of money spent on consultants, couldn’t they have gotten someone off the unemployment line with no animal experience and just put that person in charge instead? At least then I could understand the need to fly in expert after expert, week after week, month after month, for their advice.
At any rate, the court did not award ASPCA their million bucks. In fact, the judge’s ruling seems to indicate (to my layman’s understanding) that the ASPCA had not been officially appointed an agent of the state prior to the seizure and therefore had no standing to file for expenses incurred. My question would then be, if the ASPCA had no official designation from the state to act in this case, on what legal basis did they dispose of the seized animals?
Mr. Grant clearly seems to have an interest in relocating and starting a new cat sanctuary. Regardless of whether you believe Caboodle was a great place for cats, the nightmare of neglect and suffering described by the ASPCA and PETA, or fell somewhere in between, one must ask at this point – what was all this for? The raid, the mass seizure, the mass adoption events which could have theoretically been used to find homes for cats already in shelters, the court cases – what was it all for? Leave your thoughts in the comments.