Sunday, June 11, 2006

Where are the grownups?

From KATU Channel 2 in Portland, Oregon:

Criminal case dropped in snake mercy killing
DUNDEE, Ore. - Juvenile authorities have dismissed the criminal case against a 13-year old boy in Dundee who injured a garden snake.

Richard Cornwell, a middle-school student, found a badly injured garden snake on the asphalt near at his mobile home park in early May, his lawyer Eric Hanson said. The boy took the snake to his parents and asked what he should do with it. His father told him to put it out of its misery by banging the snake's head against a pole then hanging it over a fence to keep it away from children.

The boy did as he was told. But several nearby girls who saw it happen were upset by the incident. One of the girl's parents called the police to report a suspected case of animal cruelty.

Police cited Cornwell with animal cruelty. But because the act was committed in the presence of a minor, it moves from a misdemeanor to a felony. He has faced a felony and a fine of $5,000 for more than a month.

But juvenile authorities dismissed the case on Friday.

Richard's mom, Terry, said she doesn't see why the case went that far.

"He wasn't committing a crime," she said. "He was putting an injured animal out of its misery - this is ridiculous. If you're going to charge him, then fly strips should be illegal. And what about mousetraps?"

She said the police should apologize to her son.

No kidding. They should be charging the idiotic neighbors with filing a false police report, and reassigning the idiotic cops who actually followed through with it.

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