Monday, December 31, 2012

Cat Ladies Controversy Heats Up With Arrest Of "Susan" For Not-Exactly-A-Felony First Degree "Ground Feeding"

Stock photo, blog post by John Hoff

There has been a dramatic new development in the "Cat Ladies Controversy" this blogger previously covered, click here and also here. The cat lady known as "Susan" was arrested in the last few days and jailed.

Susan, whose relationship to Ultimate Cat Lady Joy Mattice is like that of Robin to Batman, or Hawthorne Hawkman to Johnny Northside, was reportedly near 111 22nd Ave. N., on the property of Atomic Recycling, LLC.  Mattice claims she has permission to be on that property and feed an old orange tabby cat named "Leo" who has been around the property for as long as 12 years. However, "Dean and Dale" have a restraining order on Joy Mattice, and live around the corner.

Joy wasn't at the Atomic Recycling property this particular day. Susan was there. And Susan believed she had permission to be on the property...

Susan walked into the lot and was arrested by Animal Control Officer Lindsey Heron, spelling of name not confirmed.

Susan was in jail for eight and a half hours but bailed out for $50. During that time, Susan was unable to use her asthma inhaler.

"FIFTY DOLLARS!" Joy said to me, in a phone conversation yesterday. "That shows you how dangerous she is!" (Sarcasm font)

"Well, Joy," I replied. "To be perfectly fair, I've seen people charged with some fairly serious crimes bail out of jail for only $50."

Joy replied she didn't know that. I didn't bother to add I've also seen people get out of jail for no bail at all.

There is a lot more to the story. I've heard suspicions voiced of cats being poisoned. Joy claims some food is being analyzed to determine if it's been poisoned.

Key to this whole controversy is the fact "ground feeding" is illegal in Minneapolis. You wouldn't think it's a crime punishable by a fine to give stale peanuts to a squirrel, or toss a stray dog the remains of your overcooked bratwurst. Well, it is against the law.

And that's ridiculous.

I don't often think of feeding stray animals as a "right" that I possess, precious to me like my right of free speech or free assembly. But I do believe deeply in "critter composting." Items like bread or old pizza don't compost well. The best way to return these items to the earth is to give these items to creatures like birds or squirrels who convert that stuff into poop, which is the best of all fertilizers.

Increasingly, it bothers me to contemplate the fact something as simple and innocent as giving old pizza to squirrels is against the law. Sure, a lot of people don't like squirrels the way I do. With biscuits and gravy.

OK, I'm only half kidding. I ate a lot of squirrel growing up in a rural environment. By which I mean, of course, gray squirrels. Red squirrels have some kind of gland that makes their meat taste sharp. I've heard the taste of red squirrel compared to turpentine. Gray squirrels, on the other hand, have a pleasing richness to their meat though (like many wild animals) it requires slow cooking and being combined with carrots and potatoes to reduce the "gamey" taste.

So obviously I'm not exactly a fanatical animal rights activist. Few people are as devoted to sampling the tasty flesh of all God's creatures as I am, click here for example.

But that just means I'm a realist. I'm not as much of an idealist about this issue as Joy Mattice, whose idealism increasingly verges on martyrdom. But this ordinance bothers me. Why can't citizens of Minneapolis who WANT to feed animals be free to do so?

An ordinance against ground feeding sounds like an infringement upon my rights. Such an ordinance should be legally challenged.

I have asked a third party who is a witness to the events involving Joy and Susan to give me a written account of what is reportedly happening, including disturbing allegations of cats being poisoned. Hopefully that written account will make its way to me in the next few weeks. 

8 comments:

The Hawthorne Hawkman said...

The issue for me isn't ground feeding, it's trespassing. If you want to feed birds, squirrels, feral cats, or other animals on your own property, be my guest. And if Minneapolis were to make that activity legal I think I'd be just fine with that. If you wanted to invite Joy and Susan over to your own property to have a feral cat feeding frenzy, maybe that ought to be your business and no one else's.

The red hot second either of these two, or anyone else for that matter, sets foot onto property that isn't theirs to do this, I have a problem. Especially considering that numerous people have asked them specifically to stay the hell away.

Anonymous said...

"Susan walked into the lot and was arrested by Animal Control Officer Lindsey Heron, spelling of name not confirmed."

Now. If we could only get the dope dealers, pimps, gun toting gang members, and general thugs to start feeding cats we might get some effective law enforcement around here!

BTW, Hawk - Nice to see that you are starting to warm to those kitty's and realigned your priorities towards protecting property rights. ;)

Folwell Neighbor said...

Animal control can arrest people? Did they use one of those snares-on-a-pole things then stuff her in a cage? Well, yeah, I guess jail sort of is a cage.

Trespassing is wrong, I'll agree with you there.
Having animal control patrol places for trespassing? Seriously, on our tax dollars? How about hire a couple less animal control officers and a couple more patrol officers?
Either that, or have animal control arrest those idiots that walk down the middle of the street. Maybe people wouldn't try to get street cred by getting arrested if it were animal control that were arresting them. Dress up animal control in clown suits, then arrest them, buahahaha. "You got arrested by a clown and got put in a cage next to a stray dog!"

Anonymous said...

The Cat Lady personifies not the nature that is around us but the nature that is within us-the infinitely ferocious and cunning prehuman creature that is still within us, sealed in the subconscious cellars of the psyche.

Johnny Northside said...

To the previous commenter, I am not sure what you mean. How is she cunning and ferocious? Or are you just talking "cat lady" symbology in general?

Anonymous said...

I meant the cat lady knows that you know that she knows that they don't know, you know? No?

Johnny Northside! said...

An example of somebody who did terrible things (allegedly) getting out of jail for $50 bail.

---------------------
Full Name: BUTLER, LIONEL .NMN
Booking Number: 2012035843
Date of Birth: 11/21/1989
Sheriff's Custody: RELEASED FROM CUSTODY ON . 12/31/2012 . 23:14
Housing Location:
Received Date/Time: 12/31/2012.. 19:29
Arrested By: MINNEAPOLIS PD
Case/Count Description of Charge Charged By Reason for Arrest Severity of Charge State of Charge Bail Information Court Appearance Date/Time Court Appearance Location
1/1 THEFT-TAKE/USE/TRANSFER MOVABLE PROP-NO CONSENT RICHFIELD PD BENCH WARRANT MISD BAIL POSTED $50
BAIL SET BY DC 1/14/2013..08:15 SOUTHDALE Address
1/2 TRESPASS-OCCUPY/ENTER DWELLING/LOCKED/POSTED BUILD RICHFIELD PD BENCH WARRANT MISD BAIL POSTED $0
1/14/2013..08:15 SOUTHDALE Address
-------

His address is reportedly 2818 Oliver Ave. N.

Johnny Northside! said...

Recent Star Tribune article shows Joy Mattice is getting considerable traction with her "neuter and release" policy proposal.

http://www.startribune.com/local/minneapolis/196232891.html?refer=y