Thursday, April 9, 2009
UPDATE 04/09/09: Voters in a southeast Kansas town re-elected their mayor, even though he faces felony charges for allegedly killing another man's dogs. McCune Mayor Don Call was returned to office by a 3-1 margin in voting Tuesday, despite the charges and his status as a write-in candidate. Call said community members supported his actions (in shooting the dogs). He reportedly shot the dogs after a neighbor complained that the animals chased his children and that Crawford County deputies had not acted on previous complaints.
02/11/09: Mayor Believed Dogs Were Vicious
McCune, KS - McCune, Kansas (population about 435) continues to make headlines. Last week, Mayor Don Call, shot and killed two dogs after a neighbor complained the dogs had chased his children. Call now faces two felony counts of animal cruelty and one misdemeanor count of criminal discharge of a weapon. At a recent city council meeting, about 70 people showed up, many of them in support of Call. Resident Shirley Showalter said, "We all should be proud we have a mayor like Don Call that will take care of us and protect our kids.''
Prior to the shooting, Sheriff’s department records show that four calls were made about Duane Wahl’s dogs for being aggressive and running loose. The department did respond, but the situation did not improve. According to Call, more complaints were made and the city also sent letters to Wahl. Call said he told his neighbor on January 12 that if the dogs were found running loose again, he would shoot them. That's exactly what he did after the Gomez family called and said the loose dogs tried to rip through their screen door.
After the shooting, there was then the issue of "lawful" disposal of the dogs, which it appears Call did not follow. Simultaneously, as deputies began investigating, a grass fire broke out near McCune. The deputy was needed to help shut down U.S. 400 near the site of the fire and did not arrest Call because of the danger created by the grass fire. Shortly thereafter, a media blitz of the shooting followed (even the Wall Street Journal picked it up) and the story filled out. Call said the dogs were loose when he shot them. Wahl said the dogs were chained up.
The drama continues to unfold.
No matter which side of the story you fall upon, it is important to point out that 4 calls to the Sheriff’s office were made prior to the shooting. Additionally, the City of McCune sent Wahl several letters concerning his dogs. Exactly how far do citizens, and in this case the mayor, have to bend over backward for an irresponsible dog owner and arcane dog laws prior to a serious mauling? The story of McCune represents a frustration that is felt across the nation. From this incident, we hope that city and county officials truly recognize this frustration.
05/16/08: Oregon Bicyclist in Serious Condition After Loose Dog Encounter
10/18/08: Rottweiler Inflicts 3,000 Stitches on Victim; Judge Frees Dog
07/15/08: Man Attacked in Groin; Officials Still Determining if Dog is "Vicious"
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| 2/11/2009 12:03 PM |
Accommodating a scary dog
Wellfleet is bending over backwards to accommodate a scary dog and its owner. The pit bull named Aries will be staying in town after all. The selectmen banished the dog in the fall for running loose unmuzzled on at least eight occasions, terrifying a skateboarder and jogger when he chased after them.
The ban was upheld in December by the court and then appealed, with a death sentence for the dog one option open to the presiding judge. But there has been an accommodation. The owner gets to keep his pet on condition that the dog be neutered, confined to a fenced area approved by the town, and otherwise leashed and muzzled.
Bending over backwards AGAIN, after the dog was cited for running loose 8 times...
| 2/11/2009 1:57 PM |
"department did respond, but the situation did not improve"
This is where the laws need to change. After x number of warnings, the DOGS ARE SEIZED by authorities.
What is the point of "warning" over and over again if the dog owner refuses and endangers the community?
These criminal dog owners are ruling the community, instead of the other way around.
| 2/11/2009 2:38 PM |
Thank God I live in an area where a call to the Sheriff's Dept. to complain about loose dogs will result in advice to "handle it," and a referal to a game officer who may even supply assistance with snares, etc.
And a call to the Sheriff's Dept. to complain about a dog being shot results in a couple of questions: 1. Was the dog running loose? 2. If you didn't want your dog shot, how come you allowed it to run loose?
Take a lesson, Kansas!
| 12/09/2009 6:15 PM |
Dec. 9, 2009 - "A planned jury trial scheduled for McCune mayor Don Call did not go through as scheduled on Wednesday. The jury has been dismissed. Crawford County Attorney Michael Gayoso Jr. said that an agreement had been reached between the two sides."
| 1/05/2010 7:54 PM |
I am a bicyclist and motorcyclist, and I am terribly afraid of loose dogs. One tried to attack me 2 days ago. I think if your dog is OUT of your yard, and in the road and attacks a bicyclist, shooting it should be hailed as heroic, and the dog owner should have to pay for any injuries to people that weren't even on the dog owners yard.
Charging the man with "animal cruelty" esp a felony is pure BS. Leash them or lose them!