Letter to Judge McCoy


(By the way, McCoy's email address is: mccoy@law.ucla.edu). He has not bothered to respond to my email and perhaps to the writer below.)

Dear Judge McCoy,

I’m writing to ask you to look into the disposition of a Small Claims Court case brought by a man named Ron Mason on or around November 19, 2008 and presided over by Court Commissioner Martin Green.

I have read the eyewitness account of four people who were in the courtroom (attached) and if even part of what it recounts is true I find Commissioner Green’s conduct very troubling.

Although I have attached the account for your edification I would like to draw your attention to a couple of particularly egregious allegations:

1. Commissioner Green is alleged to have said several times to Mr. Mason, “Why are you here?” It is a citizen’s right to be heard in Small Claims Court and I can see Commissioner Green’s actions here in no other light than as an attempt to intimidate and belittle Mr. Mason and his right to equal justice under the law, and to redress if his rights have been violated. A Court Commissioner, by questioning those rights, is abrogating them.

2. He referred to the cats who were killed by L.A. Animal Services as “contraband” when in fact they were evidence. I have spent time at City shelters and I know that animals seized in an investigation are supposed to be preserved – alive – as evidence. This is particularly true because since Mr. Mason was initially threatened with charges of felony animal neglect, the physical condition of the cats would have been relevant to the case.

3. Commissioner Green refused to order compensation for cat cages and medications seized (and not inventoried according to law) by LAPD, contending that the cages and medications were “used in conjunction” with the “contraband” cats who were seized, and were therefore contraband also. But the L.A. Municipal Code allows owners up to three cats, which Mr. Mason now has. Cages and medications are used in conjunction with cats, not just with “contraband” cats. Any responsible cat owner has medications, and cat cages are used to trap, neuter and return feral cats, an act that is explicitly allowed in the L.A. Municipal Code (53.69, c. "The Department may also waive fees under Subsections (a) and (b) for any person or rescue organization described above, assisting the Department to safely capture an animal for the health or safety of the animal or the public, including the trapping, neutering and returning of feral cats." I do not believe Commissioner Green has the right to decide which cats need medication and cages and which don’t.

4. He repeatedly (reportedly six times) compared Mr. Mason’s seized property to the gun of a felon. This was not only false, it was slanderous, because Mr. Mason was never convicted of anything, which also calls into question how he could call the property of someone who never committed a crime “contraband.”

5. His only criterion for determining the validity of a warrant was to remark that he knew the issuing judge and she was a “good judge.” This is appalling, giving an enormous appearance of impropriety to the entire court system. Of course the warrant was issued by a judge, and yes, he might know that judge, but to openly proclaim that the fact that he knew a judge was reason enough not to question a warrant’s validity is to completely undermine the basis of our criminal system. A warrant isn’t valid because you know the issuer; it’s valid or not based on the facts, and anything less is a complete mockery of the law.

Judge McCoy, I read the account of this proceeding and felt outraged that any citizen should be treated with this degree of disrespect and disregard for his rights. Commissioner Green has openly demonstrated not only an unjust bias towards law enforcement and judicial officials; he has shown a complete contempt for people who depend upon him for a fair hearing and for justice.

I’m asking that you investigate this case, speak to Mr. Mason and the other individuals who were in court that day, along with Commissioner Green. If you find that any one of the allegations against Commissioner Green have merit, I ask that you either dismiss him or substantively discipline him for this misconduct, contempt for the public, and corruption of the law. It is our right to expect justice when we go into a Los Angeles courtroom. Mr. Mason did not receive justice from Commissioner Green, I hope he will from you and that we can be reassured that we as citizens can expect justice as well.

Thank you for your help in this matter,

Major Cuts in LAAS Looming

Mayor Villaraigosa asks each dept. to take a 3% cut for the remainder of this fiscal year, and prepare a trio of new budgets for fiscal 2009-2010 for up to a 9% cut.


Complaint Sent to Green's Superior

Dear Judge McCoy,

You may not know this but there is a constant battle over the rights of animal advocates, rescuers, homeowners and feral cat colony managers vs. the LA Animal Cruelty Task Force, and the latter's focus on busting and jailing people who have too many cats.

The ACTF was tasked with stopping animal cruelty cases, such as cock and dogfighting rings and abuse of animals in LA City.

Instead, it has focused on arresting and seizing animals of those who have too many cats and dogs. One ACTF member, Officer Munez, told me that animal "hoarding" was the Task Force's biggest problem, while another person who called the task force and complained that someone was poisoning neighborhood cats was told that even if a necropsy were performed, and poisoning was found, the Task Force did not have the manpower to investigate.

Apparently though they do have the manpower to raid little old ladies or men who have too many cats (article by Dana Bartholomew, Daily News).

Neither the little old ladies nor this man mentioned below have weapons as might persons in a cockfighting ring. Also, little old lady residents don't tend to move around to thwart being discovered as would dog fighting rings.

The specific case I have in mind is that of Ron Mason who was arrested for felony animal neglect for having too many cats on his property. The head of the Task Force at that time was Lt. Boswell, who admitted during a television interview that Mr. Mason had provided food, water and shelter. Mason had also provided medical care.

The District Attorney refused to press felony charges and the City Attorney refused to file misdemeanor animal neglect charges. Mr. Mason was not even charged, let alone tried for violation of LA MC 53.50, violation of the Kennel ordinance of having more than three cats.

51 cats were seized and about 30 killed at the shelter. Several cages, carriers and traps were also seized as he used them to trap and transport the cats to be spayed or neutered, or to a veterinarian to receive medical attention. Medications were also seized.

City TV 35 filmed the raid and at least five agencies were involved. Dana Bartholomew was present from the Daily News. Mason was arrested and jailed.

A very brief list of evidence supplied by the police listed only the medications. No cats, no traps, carriers or cages.

The head of Animal Services, General Manager Ed Boks, said about Mr. Mason in the Bartholomew article as well as on the LAAS website, that Mr. Mason was a felon and mentally ill. He also stated that conditions of probation would forbid him from having any pets. In many ways other ways, Mr. Boks, GM or LAAS, defamed Mr. Mason.

Mr. Mason recently went to Small Claims Court to obtain finances to buy new carriers, traps and cages to continue to trap and transport animals to be altered. As he does not have an operational car, he has been forced to transport the animals on buses. Without traps and carriers, the cats not seized during the October 11, 2007 raid have begun to multiply again, making him subject to further raids by the ACTF and Animal Services. Mr. Mason is unemployed and on disability. Buying a car, traps and carriers therefore was not an option.

Yesterday Mr. Mason and three other of us went before Commissioner Martin Green with Mason suing the City and Animal Services for the financial loss of 51 cats, cages, traps, carriers and medications.

As you are Commissioner Green superior, I want you to know what happened while in Green’s courtroom.

The following is a transcript of that hearing as accurately as the four of us are able to piece together. The below transcript was deemed by us to be completely accurate. The below was posted on by blog,

I have covered this case for over a year as it is extremely important with respect to anyone who has more than three cats or dogs in the City, which is several thousand people, who are terrified of being raided, having their animals seized and killed.

This case even affects many people who foster cats given to them by Animal Services to care for prior to returning to the City shelters for adoption, and therefore have many more than three cats.

The entirety of the Mason case can be found at:


Animal Services has been attempting to raise the limit of cats allowed to 10. Animal Services has also supported legalizing Trap/Neuter/and Spay (of ferals). They are now doing a CEQA study to present to Council.

Therefore, their actions, in conjunction with the ACTF and the police pose a bewildering inconsistency and/or hypocrisy by the City, Animal Services and the ACTF regarding MC 53.50 the kennel law, as well as what constitutes animal neglect.

Tamie Bryant at UCLA is familiar with all of these issues.

From my blog:
The Death Knell for Justice for LA Animal People Has Been Rung

The Death Knell for Justice for Animal People In LA Has Been Rung

Ron mason had his day in court today.

He sued the City in Small Claims court for the City the seizing and killing of his cats, confiscating his cages and cat medications and not having them returned.

The court Commissioner, Martin Green, found for the City on everything:

1. He said the cats were contraband because the law allowed him having only three cats, and as such they can be confiscated and killed.

2. The cages were used in conjunction with the contraband cats were therefore also contraband and need not be returned without a court order which would require Mason to hire an attorney---according to Green. He actually said, "Get a lawyer."

3. Since Mason did not have the 50 cats anymore, the medications seized were not needed, therefore the City had no reason to reimburse Mason. Green ignored Mason's statement he still had three cats for which the cages and medication could be used.

Green also specifically likened the cages to a gun used in a felony. He said it was a hyperbole, but repeated it six times, likening Mason to being a felon and the cages a gun.

He said this was hyperbole, but repeated this example 6 times.

Let's get one thing straight. The District Attorney never charged Mason with a felony. The City Attorney never charged Mason with any crime, not even the kennel law, MC 53.50. Therefore, how can the cats and cages be contraband?

I asked "Commissioner Green, "Does that mean that anyone who has more than three cats is at risk to be raided, have all their cats and cages, food, vet documents, seized and the cats killed?"

His response was, "Yes, to the fullest extent of the law."

The police investigator representing the City, of course, didn't have a copy of the warrants with him. Ron did. Green said nothing, except after reading it, he recognized the judge and said she was a good judge, therefore the warrants were in order--that is, he covered the City for the weakness of the warrants.

Green asked the City rep (a police investigator) if there was an accounting of all the seized items. The rep said when anything was seized, a complete list was given to the person arrested, but he did not produce a copy of the list, nor did the Commissioner ask for one.

Ron offered a copy of the list actually sent to him by the police department three days after the raid, and that list never mentioned the 51 seized cats as required by CA Penal Code, nor did it mention the cages.

Green said, "Why do you want me to read that?"

Over and over Commissioner asked Mason, "Why are you here? What did the City do wrong?"

Then he found for the City on everything.

So be afraid, be very, very afraid. The checks and balances on government abuse of power are gone in LA when it comes to animals.


In a stunning turn around, HSUS Wayne Pacelle has embraced "no kill" using words almost identical to Winograd's.

In addition, two of Nathan's proteges will be speaking at speaking at the HSUS Expo next year.

Wow, what a turnaround.

From Nathan Winograd:

Did HSUS’ Wayne Pacelle Say “No Kill”? Yes he did, and more!

In announcing a partnership for a national advertising campaigning promoting adoptions being launched by Maddie’s Fund, HSUS, and the Ad Council, Wayne Pacelle stated:

It will make a life-saving difference in securing loving homes for untold numbers of pets and get us closer to a no-kill nation.

But, most importantly, HSUS states that the public does care and is not to blame for their killing, that killing animals in shelters is “needless,” that we can be a No Kill nation today, and that “pet overpopulation” is more myth than fact.

In language that is eerily (though excitingly) familiar to language in my book, Redemption, HSUS says:

“By increasing the percentage of people who obtain their pets through adoption—by just a few percentage points—we can solve the problem of euthanasia of healthy and treatable dogs and cats.”

“The needless loss of life in animal shelters is deplored by the American public. People deeply love their dogs and cats and feel that killing pets who are homeless through no fault of their own is a problem we must work harder to prevent. They want animals to have a second chance at life, not death by injection.”

“The needless killing of pets by animal shelters and animal control agencies comes at an enormous economic and moral cost."

This comes after announcing that staunch and unapologetic pro-No Kill advocates Susanne Kogut and Bonney Brown will be speaking at HSUS Expo 2009! Kogut runs an open admission shelter saving 93% of all dogs and 89% of all cats, while Brown has led a lifesaving initiative now saving 90% of dogs and 86% of all cats YTD.

Nonetheless, it’s way too early to uncork the champagne. As Ryan Clinton of FixAustin.org stated, “it doesn’t ask the shelters to do anything different.”

Read more at www.nokillblog.com

Cat Killing Up 30.5% for Past 12 Months

For the past 12 months compared to the same 12 month interval last year, cat intake is up 20% but killing is up 30.5%! That is, killing is rising MUCH faster than intakes. Cat adoptions are up 19%. They would have to increase 250% to offset the killing.

Dog intake is up 18%, and adoptions up 28%. Even with adoptions up, killing was 22% higher than the year before.

Killing for the category of All Other Animals increased 56% while intakes increased only 7%.

That is, the killing increase is 700% higher than the percentage intake! Intake went from 7,950 to 8,499 (549 animals or 7% increase), while killing went from 2,313 to 3,619 (56% increase).

Another way of saying it, for every 1 additional animal brought in, an additional 2.4 were killed.


LA Puppies for Obama

Los Angeles Animal Services has offered 2 black poodle puppies to Obama. They are hypoallergenic and are shelter dogs.

Can you imagine how many dogs' lives will be saved over the next few years as people want to do just as Obama has done? Tens of thousands.

I, and several other people have tried to contact various Obama sources to make this happen. Please, everyone use your own method to get to Obama to make it happen.

I have a very good contact number but don't want to post it because some people might use the number to try to poison Boks in Obama's eyes. This is far too important a life-saving opportunity for LA and shelter animals across the country to be ruined by someone who wants to attack Boks.


I will give those who want this number privately upon emailing me.



Click on photo to Enlarge

Many years ago when I lived in Santa Monica, I knew this very unique woman, Wilma Lusk.

Wilma worked as a receptionist for many years for Ken Jones. Wilma got to be a good friend of mine and taught me a lot about cats.

Wilma died in 1998 a few weeks after Christmas. Wilma's life revolved around cats and she would foster and place hundreds over the years. Kerima and I got 3 from Wilma, a Calico named Malita who died 4 years ago, Dustin, our cancer kitty, and Daisy, his sister.

Daisy died today about 4 pm of kidney failure. She had been on a IV drip for three days at Adler's Clinic in Reseda. She went downhill from the moment we took her in. We took her home last night because she looked so miserable in the vet's cage. She stayed with us for 18 hours and then died peacefully. She never went into a coma. I wish we had done that with Gracie, who was sinking away peacefully, but she died in a cage at Adlers', and not at home.

Daisy had a grade II/IV heart murmur most of her life and possibly died from a heart attack.
This is the third cat of ours to die in 20 months at Adler's Clinic: Gopi, Gracie and now Daisy. All three had been on IV fluids.
Unfortunately there are always stray cats out there that need loving owners, so we have had no difficulty finding "replacements."
We can never "replace" any of them, but there are a lot of needy kitties out there.
Her brother and Kali are saying their goodbyes.
Life sucks.