COURT CALENDAR

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 1994:

Activism
Forty-two activists who were
arrested at the 1992 Hegins Labor Day
pigeon shoot on July 15 sued 16 employ-
ees and officials of Schuykill County,
Pennsylvania, who allegedly subjected
them to illegal strip-searches. The plain-
tiffs include PETA cofounders Alex
Pacheco and Ingrid Newkirk, who claims
male guards were able to see her nude
through an open door. The suit parallels
one filed by nine female activists who won
a similar case after the 1991 Hegins shoot.
U.S. judge Franklin S, Van Antwerpen
ruled last September in that case that the
Schuykill county strip-searching policy
was unconstitutional.

Seattle activist and former Sea
Shepherd Conservation Society staffer
Elizabeth Fries escaped jail June 28 and
again on July 29 despite refusing to testify
before a federal grand jury in Portland,
Oregon, which is apparently probing
Animal Liberation Front activity. “I
entered several motions on her behalf and
judge Malcolm Marsh ruled favorably,”
said her attorney, Lawrence Weiss, who
was barred by a gag order from providing
details. Fries is to make another court
appearance in October.
British Animal Liberation
Front press officer Robin Webb, 49,
and fellow ALF activist David Hammond,
40, were charged August 19 in Hove,
East Sussex, with illegal possession of a
sawed-off shotgun and ammunition.
Chicago activists Deb Leahy
and Steve Hindi were cleared of charges
by directed verdict on June 20 and July 22,
respectively. Leahy was accused of
“assaulting” a woman in a fur coat by
telling her what she thought of it; Hindi
purportedly woke a conservation site man-
ager’s wife by using a bullhorn at a protest
against captive bird shooting.
Monitoring the trial of Peter
and Lisa Vanderhof, who allegedly
starved their dog Shaheen to death last
winter, Linda Hyatt of Whitehall, New
York, was charged with criminal contempt
of court on June 23 for slapping Peter
Vanderhof, moments after he won his
fourth postponement of the case.
Crimes against humans
Salvatore Inghilleri, 41, of
Bay Shore, New York, drew four to 12
years in prison August 9 for sexually abus-
ing stepdaughter Katie Beers, now 11,
whom he intimidated by bashing her cat to
death against a wall. In 1992 Beers was
kidnapped and held in an underground
bunker for 16 days by another abusive
friend of her mother’s, John Esposito,
who is now serving 15 years to life.
Avid hunter Norman Roderick
Harrell, 45, of Washington, D.C., was
charged July 27 with gutting alive Diane
Magdeline Hawkins, 43, and daughter
Katrina Denise Harris, 13, on May 26,
1993, following instructions in a deer
hunting manual that he allegedly left open
at the scene. Harrell was reputedly
incensed that Hawkins had asked him for
child support for a young son, who was
not home at the time of the murders.
Arthur Nordahl, 47, of
Brimson, Minnesota, pleaded guilty July
8 to second-degree murder in the dismem-
berment killing of Christine Renee Kuchta,
32, a waitress who worked in his failing
restaurant. “He didn’t give a damn about
anything except fishing and hunting,” son
Marc Nordahl said.
Bowhunter Harry Webber, 52,
was charged with murder on July 23 in
Oak Park, Illinois, for allegedly impaling
his common-law wife, Guadalupe, with
two yard-long arrows in front of three of
their four children, ages 10 to 15, and a
15-year-old friend.
Homeless crack cocaine addicts
Steven and Kathleen Giguere, of
Fullerton, California, were sentenced to
six years each in prison on August 10 for
allowing a pet rat to kill their four-month-
old son by biting him more than 100 times
as he lay in the garbage-filled car they and
a four-year-old daughter called home.
Judge Kazuharu Makino gave them the
maximum on the charges.
Rookie New York City police-
man Victor DiDonato, 30, suspended in
May for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend,
on July 16 was charged with tracking her
to a motel parking lot, firing a 12-gauge
shotgun twice at a man in the lot, carjack-
ing a vehicle, driving to his apartment,
and then, surrounded by police, throwing
a pet rabbit out the window, firing four
shots at her as she fell.
A jury in Bath, New York, on
August 17 convicted Eric Smith, 14, of
first degree murder for the 1993 torture-
murder of Derrick Robie, age 4. In a par-
allel incident a year earlier, Smith killed a
neighbor’s cat.
The California state Supreme
Court on July 21 allowed a manslaugh-
ter charge to stand against rancher Arbis
Shipley, of San Mateo County, for negli-
gent fence maintenance that repeatedly let
horses escape, resulting in a car/horse
crash that killed Viola Sheutrum, 76, in
March 1992.
A 19-year-old and two juve-
niles are to face charges in Auburn,
Alabama, for severely burning a puppy
named Gucci to intimidate a runaway 15-
year-old girl. Gucci was saved by Spring
Hill College professor Doug James, and
has received restorative surgery from vol-
unteer veterinarians at Auburn College.
The girl returned home after the incident.
Failures of dogs to bark alarm
are considered vital clues in two current
murder cases. In Los Angeles, prosecu-
tors believe former football star O.J.
Simpson, 46, was able to kill his ex-wife
Nicole, 35, and her friend Ronald
Goldman, 25, on June 12 because her
Akita recognized him. Similarly, prosecu-
tors in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana,
believe Paul Lanclos, 34, was able to kill
his girlfriend, Belinda Agnelly, 31, and
her daughter Canadace, 3, because their
dog didn’t bark.
Death threats against women
researchers, arsons, and attempted poi-
sonings in geneticist Dr. Robert Roeder’s
laboratory at Rockefeller University in
New York City have been linked by police
not to animal rights activists, as some
thought, but rather to a jilted lover in a
failed office affair.
AKC sued
A group of Labrador retriever
breeders has filed an $11 million class
action antitrust suit against the American
Kennel Club for disqualifying Labs under
21.5 inches in height from show competi-
tion. Preliminary motions were heard July
6 in Alexandria, Virginia, at which time
the case was postponed and moved to fed-
eral court in New York City.
Animal traffic
Two months after an Indiana pros-
ecutor dropped cruelty charges PETA filed
against a fur farmer for killing chinchillas by
genital electrocution, PETA and the Sonoma
County Humane Society on August 3 filed
similar charges against Jose LaCalle of
Freestone, California, owner of Bella
Chinchilla International.
Miami laboratory animal dealer
Matthew Block has posted a reward of $5,000
for information leading to the recovery of 33
baby Asian macaques stolen from his head-
quarters on July 8. Block is out of prison
pending an appeal of his 13-month sentence for
allegedly brokering the “Bangkok Six” orang-
utan smuggling case.
The Wisconsin Alliance for
Animals reports that Gary Stebane, son of for-
mer animal dealer Erv Stebane, has applied to
the USDA for a license to sell random-source
dogs and cats to laboratories. Charged with
multiple Animal Welfare Act violations and
suspected of involvement in pet theft for 20
years, Erv Stebane on March 28 became the
first Class B (random source) dealer to lose his
USDA license for life. On June 16 he sued
Calumet County for circa $50,000, the value
he placed upon 47 dogs reported stolen from
shelters around Wisconsin after they were
seized in connection with cruelty charges
brought as result of an undercover “sting” set
up by Last Chance for Animals. Calumet
County judge Donald Poppy dismissed the
charges on grounds of entrapment and ordered
that the dogs be returned to Stebane.
Class B dealer Jerry Vance, of
Europa, Missisippi, has been fined $25,000
by the USDA for multiple Animal Welfare Act
violations, with $20,000 of the fine suspended
on condition that Vance not further violate the
AWA during the next 20 years. His Class B
permit was also revoked for life. Evidence that
Vance was involved in dubious animal transac-
tions was gathered in part by In Defense of
Animals representative Doll Stanley-
Branscum. Vance recently filed a $45 million
libel suit against CBS and dog owner Ronney
Rainey, who recovered his stolen dog on
Vance’s property and then talked about it on an
episode of Eye to Eye with Connie Chung.
A circuit court jury in Linn
County, Oregon, on July 21 awarded former
Class B dealer Joe Hickey, 37, $100,000 in
damages for remarks his godmother Merthal
Settlemier, 77, made about him on a 1990
episode of the ABC news program 20/20.
Hickey also sued ABC, but that case was dis-
missed. The Hickey family and associates
have been repeatedly fined for major Animal
Welfare Act violations pertaining to sanitation
and pet theft. Hickey reportedly intends to use
the money––if he ever collects––to resume
business. The case is likely to be appealed.
Only nine of the 12 jurors actually agreed that
Hickey had been defamed.
Don Johnson, of Seattle, has col-
lected $8,000 in final settlement of damages he
won against Don Peters of Monroe,
Washington, for promising to give his dog a
good home for life but instead selling her to
the University of Washington, where she died
in a lung experiment. The Progressive Animal
Welfare Society sued Peters on behalf of
Johnson, winning a default judgement and a
lien against Peters’ home in 1991.
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