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Extremely Urgent! Ask judge to spare life of Pit Bull!

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  • Rita Fazio <r.e.fazio@worldnet.att.net>
    URGENT LETTER: CA - Ask Judge to spare life of pit bull This is Extremely urgent. The dog could be put to sleep at any time. The letters must be sent soon. I
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 1, 2003
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      URGENT LETTER: CA - Ask Judge to spare life of pit bull
      This is Extremely urgent. The dog could be put to sleep at any time.
      The letters must be sent soon. I urge you to email and/or call right
      away, but also send the letters.
      Below the sample letter is a copy of an article which describes a
      case that set a standard for future cases concerning BSL and
      genetics. Please include a copy of that article with your letter.
      Thanks

      Alert by FeralPlace@... (aol.com)

      SOURCE:
      http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/archive/2003/January/31/local/storie
      s/05local.htm
      5local.htm; Contact info provided by Christina@...

      CONTACT:
      Judge Robert Atack, Department 9
      Santa Cruz Main Courthouse
      701 Ocean Street, Room 110
      Santa Cruz, CA 95060

      Court House Phone # (831) 454-2020
      Court house email : court@...-cruz.ca.us

      SAMPLE LETTER:

      Judge Atack:

      Please accept this letter as a petition respectfully requesting that
      you spare the life of a pit bull named "Cocoa Puff."

      According to a news article in the Santa Cruz Sentinel ("Pit bull
      must die, judge rules," by Cathy Redfern, 1/31/03), county animal
      control officials have been ordered to kill a 3 year old pit bull
      because of complaints from neighbors. Although Cocoa Puff has run
      loose in the neighborhood she has never bitten, or tried to bite,
      anyone.

      County officials call it a sad case that stems from the caretaker's
      inability or unwillingness to control her pet. It is unfortunate
      that Cocoa Puff must die because of her caretaker's negligence.

      Please spare the life of this dog and, instead, turn her over to a
      pit bull rescue who can find her a proper home with a caretaker who
      will act responsibly. Cocoa Puff should not have to give her life
      due to human negligence.

      Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

      Sincerely,

      --end of sample--

      NEWS ARTICLE:

      Pit bull must die, judge rules
      Cocoa Puff called "sweet" "vicious"
      By CATHY REDFERN
      Sentinel STAFF WRITER

      Unless her distraught owner appeals, a pit bull called both sweet
      and vicious will be destroyed by county animal control officials.
      The dog's owner sobbed Thursday as a judge upheld an order for the
      dog to be put to death. She shouted at departing county
      attorneys, "Are you happy now?" The 3-year-old pet, Cocoa Puff, got
      in trouble last year after months of complaints by her Rio del Mar
      neighbors. Responding to those complaints, the dog was deemed
      vicious by animal control workers. They ordered its owner, Bonnie
      Ridino, to keep the dog penned up on her Granada Drive property. But
      Cocoa Puff ran loose again, and neighbors complained, saying the dog
      threatened them by growling and barking at them and their children.
      Ridino says she's the sweetest dog in the world. "We've been going
      through hell around here," said neighbor Linda Morello. "I'm a dog
      owner too, but we've been terrorized." Dubbed a habitual offender,
      Cocoa Puff was sentenced to death in September. Ridino hired an
      attorney to appeal that sentence, but in November, the county Animal-
      nuisance Abatement Commission upheld the order. The dog was caught
      Saturday, with the help of a sheriff's deputy. Thursday, Judge
      Robert Atack denied the owner's appeal of the commission's decision.
      Evidence shows that the dog, "in certain circumstances when running
      at large, poses a threat to neighbors and their children," Atack
      said. County officials call it a sad case that stems from Ridino's
      inability or unwillingness to control her pet. It is "highly
      unusual" for volunteer animal-nuisance abatement commissioners to
      sign a destruction order, their attorney said. Ridino's attorney,
      John Hannon, said gentle, kind Cocoa Puff is a victim of an infamous
      San Francisco dog mauling case. He stressed that Cocoa Puff never
      bit, or tried to bite, anyone. "With the situation of that poor lady
      butchered, the last thing a judge wants is to let a dog go and have
      it attack some 4-year-old," he said. Hannon questioned the
      commission's hearing process, the evidence of the dog's menacing
      behavior and said Cocoa Puff had matured since deemed vicious.
      Ridino rescued Cocoa Puff from a trash can when she was a puppy. Her
      friends attended Thursday's hearing and said neighbors had a grudge
      against Ridino. Petitions were signed for both sides. No date has
      been set for the dog's death, a county Animal Services
      representative said, in part because they are unsure if Ridino will
      appeal. Her attorney said he was unsure as well.
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