AlphaTex Kennels -Got Their Day in Court and WON!!! YIPPEE!!!

As everyone knows, I have been following the AlphaTex Kennels seizure case…

Absolutely everything was done to make the Smiths appear guilty of cruelty just short of denying them a trial by jury…They sent petitions, made calls to judges, even posted pictures and shamed these people with malicious slanderous statements for more than three months…a humane society with no facilities and no credentials…destructive law enforcement…judges going along with the charges for fear of the law suit…judges and a prosecutor dropping out of the case -they knew, you better believe they did and allowed the destruction of citizens of their community… DESPICABLE!!! I could easily go on and on and fill this entire blog with the abuse of the Smiths and anyone who took their side endured…There are more than 50 comments that I did not post because they were either directed at me, malicious or simply contributed nothing. Daizy Langmesser, the ring leader of hatred towards the Smiths, was spreading lies and slander on the internet. What FB page will she create next?!?

The jury is in…The dogs were NOT cruelly treated by the Smiths…YIPPEE!!! They got it right and more of us will win as these FAKE cases of cruelty will be exposed…The Texas 812 statute, which is unconstitutional, has allowed for people to loose their animals…Animals murdered in the process…Well, things in Texas are looking up for animals and their owners!!! It is illegal and immoral to make false claims and to deny a  TRIAL BY JURY…the people making false claims did everything possible to deny this jury…they even hired Donald Feare…the fearless -HA!!!…The odds were staked against the Smith’s and their attorneys…they forged ahead of those odds and won!!! YIPPEE!!!

“As the verdict was read Attorney Donald Feare left like a rat on a sinking ship” -Congratulations to the Smith’s attorneys Holloway and Casenave!!!

Justice was served today and think I for one will be cerebrating!!! Of course, after I sit down and have a good cry…

Stay tuned…Follow this blog Best -B

~ by topcatsroar on January 20, 2012.

10 Responses to “AlphaTex Kennels -Got Their Day in Court and WON!!! YIPPEE!!!”

  1. I am a close personal friend of Mark and Sandra and their son Kory and I have followed them through this ordeal. I have been to their house numerous times and didn’t see the cruelty that was reported in the media. I was totally shocked at how this case was handled. It basically was tried in the Lubbock, Texas media before it ever really went to trial. Praise the Lord! Justice was done today. I have been telling Sandra all along that this was their load to bear and that they are going to help change the laws about how these things are handled. I just hate that it happened to them, but today is a VICTORY in Texas for animal breeders. :)

  2. First off, a little correction… It’s not “Texas 812 statute,” but the Texas Health and Safety Code Section 821 that’s unconstitutional and needs to be struck down. Imagine, 10 days to hold a “hearing” (nice, cutesy word for “trial.”), and then they say oh, but we can’t empanel a jury in 10 days’ time. We need at least 2 weeks, cause our office procedures are a mess…” Well, honey court clerk, I don’t think our founding fathers considered your office conveniences when they wrote the Bill of Rights. Shame on them, right? So naturally, the Constitution has to wait for your people to get back from coffee break.

    Second, I need to say that all those people commenting on the news media sites that the AlphaTex jury should be forced to spend a month in a cage with dirty water to drink and all that, ought to consider serving on a jury themselves sometime. It’s no vacation. And if you think you’re going to get put on a jury to decide the fate of some alleged “animal abuser,” think again. The moment the lawyers find out your biases, you’ll be off the role. The people selected have NO bias and no preconceived notions about the people being tried. That’s part of our justice system, and why Feare and others tried their damnedest to prevent having a jury at all. They weighed all the evidence, pro and con, and made their decision. Like it or not, that’s the verdict. Accept it and move on to the next innocent animal owner you want to tar and feather because of pictures you’ve seen. If dirty water constituted cruelty, how many farmers would be jailed because they didn’t drain, sanitize, and refill their 200-gallon water troughs daily? How many lakes and ponds would have to be drained and refilled daily? And the animals would STILL prefer to drink out of a mud puddle.

  3. One reporter was giving blow by blow account of this trial…and the followers…the hate group, the fosters and probably HSWT…

    Will these people be so bold when it goes to federal court?!?
    Will they make calls and send petitions to judges who will rule based of the law and how unlawful this was…I think they might pray for mercy and hide under a rock with the snakes…
    What of Attorney Donald Feare?!? Well, he will now bill the county and move on…He had nothing to loose accept his reputation…he’s nothing to fear(e)…He’s been in communication with this league of haters all along and many of us have the proof of it…Just wondering how ethical that is!!!

  4. In the news:
    http://m.myplainview.com/mpv/pm_10330/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=e6fcrZZz

    CANYON — A jury took less than an hour to return with a verdict in favor of AlphaTex Kennels.

    The six-person Randall County jury decided no cruelty had occurred at the kennel located near Aiken and that the close to 200 animals seized almost four months ago by the Floyd County Sheriff’s Department should be returned to Mark and Sandra Smith.

    “We’re very happy,” the Smiths said as they left the 181st District Courtroom at the Randall County Justice Center with their son Kory and attorneys Paul Holloway and Jessica Skinner of Plainview.

    The entire Smith family became emotional when the five-man, one-woman jury returned with its verdict at 5:20 p.m. Friday after a four-day long hearing.

    “Our life was on the line,” Sandra Smith said.

    The Smiths said their lives have been “torn apart” since Sept. 28 when volunteers with the Humane Society of West Texas in Lubbock, acting on the recommendation of its investigator who received a tip about animal cruelty, began sending AlphaTex’s German shepherds, golden retrievers and collies to foster facilities and homes throughout the state.

  5. FULL REPORT:
    http://m.myplainview.com/mpv/db_/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=e6fcrZZz&full=true#display

    CANYON — A jury took less than an hour to return with a verdict in favor of AlphaTex Kennels.

    The six-person Randall County jury decided no cruelty had occurred at the kennel located near Aiken and that the close to 200 animals seized almost four months ago by the Floyd County Sheriff’s Department should be returned to Mark and Sandra Smith.

    “We’re very happy,” the Smiths said as they left the 181st District Courtroom at the Randall County Justice Center with their son Kory and attorneys Paul Holloway and Jessica Skinner of Plainview.

    The entire Smith family became emotional when the five-man, one-woman jury returned with its verdict at 5:20 p.m. Friday after a four-day long hearing.

    “Our life was on the line,” Sandra Smith said.

    The Smiths said their lives have been “torn apart” since Sept. 28 when volunteers with the Humane Society of West Texas in Lubbock, acting on the recommendation of its investigator who received a tip about animal cruelty, began sending AlphaTex’s German shepherds, golden retrievers and collies to foster facilities and homes throughout the state. That investigator said conditions at the kennels, which Floyd County officials said included pens containing feces and urine as well as dirty dog water that led to many of the dogs being underweight and sick, were inhumane.

    But the jury, after hearing some 25 hours of testimony, disagreed.

    Judge John Board gave the jury a choice in asking if all of the dogs at AlphaTex were cruelly treated or if just some of them were cruelly treated. They decided none were.

    “It didn’t come out like we wanted it to,” said Don Feare, the attorney from Arlington hired to represent Floyd County. “My position is not theirs, but that’s how it works.”

    The sides now must decide how and when to return the dogs to the Smiths. They said that should take place in the coming days.

    “It’s been very traumatic,” Sandra Smith said. “I’ve been (involved with) dogs for 40 years, and every dog is special. We miss every one of them.

    “Our lives have been torn apart, but we’ll be back together now,” she added. “AlphaTex will be back up.”

    Holloway said he was happy for the Smiths and obviously was pleased with the verdict.

    “I felt we were winning it on the evidence,” he said. “We think justice was done.”

    The ruling came after a ruling against the Smiths by Floyd County Justice of the Peace Tali Jackson in mid-November. In addition to losing custody of the animals, Jackson ruled they had to pay more than $350,000 to cover care for the dogs since the seizure.

    However, that ruling was dismissed after the Smiths filed for indigent status. Rather than go through that lengthy process, Feare agreed to a new hearing, which was held in Randall County after Holloway sought a change of venue because he said the Smiths could not receive a fair trial in Floydada and that death threats had been made against them.

    No appeal is available by Floyd County, which also is party to a lawsuit filed on behalf of the Smiths in federal court in Lubbock. That suit accuses Floyd County officials of constitutional rights violations and accuses KCBD-TV in Lubbock, which was present when the dogs were seized, of trespassing.

    That suit was put on hold late last year until the custody hearing was settled. After the ruling Friday, Holloway did not comment on the federal suit, saying he wouldn’t take “cheap shots” like he felt the state had done.

    The Smiths said they appreciated everyone who helped them, especially Holloway and Skinner as well as “all of the foster families for taking such good care” of their dogs.

    “We’re just so thankful to everyone,” Sandra Smith said.

    It was Mark Smith who spent close to three hours Friday on the stand.

    He became emotional on a couple of occasions when he was asked about specific dogs. Those included a dog the Smiths were keeping for a man in the military while he is in Afghanistan.

    “I don’t know where that dog is,” Mark Smith said.

    It also included three dogs euthanized the day of the six-hour seizure.

    Smith said one of those, Comet, suffered from hair loss due to a thyroid problem, not mange as was speculated. Another euthanized dog, Morgan, had been kicked by a horse, while another, a black German shepherd puppy, had a hard time walking but was on the road to recovery and was to be adopted by former AlphaTex employee Rebekka Terrell.

    Apparently, it was video of that puppy that sparked the investigation.

    Mark Smith, who said he spent more than $1,500 trying to help those particular dogs, said he was “heartbroken” when the dogs were put down.

    Holloway spent a great deal of time chronicling events during the nine months before the seizure that he said led to an abundance of dogs as well as less-than-desirable conditions at AlphaTex.

    Those included Mark Smith having restricted mobility after he had a toe amputated in July (he said he spent $43,000 on medical bills last year) as well as various other factors that resulted in having limited help at the kennel in the weeks leading up to the seizure.

    Feare wasn’t moved, however, saying that regardless of Smith’s medical condition he still has to take proper care of the dogs.

    “Should the animals pay the price for that?” Feare asked. “Nothing was good out there. The kept big dogs alive so they could reproduce little dogs they could sell.”

    Smith, who said AlphaTex passed its annual American Kennel Club inspection a month before the seizure, testified that a “downturn in the economy” made for more animals than normal at AlphaTex due to decreased sales. He also said a hot, dry summer contributed to the dogs’ dirty drinking water as the dogs spent more time in the water in an attempt to cool down, and a burn ban prohibited dead dogs placed in a pit to be properly disposed of. He said wild animals drug them out of the pit, and the investigator found carcasses and piles of bones.

    Smith said all of his dogs except three were in good shape, and he didn’t know how 50 percent of a group of 50-75 dogs tested positive for heartworm, or how seven puppies died of distemper. He thought those diseases could have been picked up from the stock trailers in which the dogs were transported, although Feare presented evidence through veterinarian Dr. Shelly Wolfe that that wasn’t possible.

    Feare also took exception to Smith’s testimony that it takes one person only one day to clean up, feed and water all 200 dogs, that the feces shown in several photos accumulated in just 2-3 days and that the health of the dogs deteriorated over a short period.

    “This didn’t happen overnight. It’s been going on for a long time,” said Feare, who compared AlphaTex to a dungeon.

    After an objection from Feare was overruled, Holloway entered into evidence a 3-inch binder containing photos of all of the AlphaTex dogs, taken within the past 18 months. That was in response to Holloway’s claim that the state presented photos showing only six different dogs, or about 3 percent, with health issues.

    “Looks can be deceiving,” Holloway said in his 30-minute final statement to the jury.

    He said “all of this could have been avoided” had the Smiths been told in a warning to clean up the property.

    “The place wasn’t as clean as we had hoped,” Holloway said.

    But in a region where people often come to the help of their neighbors, he asked why weren’t the Smiths afforded a chance, especially in light of their circumstances, to make it right.

    Instead, “his neighbors took his business, his livelihood.”

    A Randall County jury gave them back.

  6. The news of the Smiths’ victory is burning over the internet. Those who created or were members of the “hate sites” on fb are screaming foul, screaming for the 800+ pictures that were claimed to exist, screaming at Feare, whom they had called their hero before. They want heads & they don’t care whose heads they are. So they blame everyone & everything. They blame the jurors, the witnesses, the judges. They haven’t removed their blindfolds as if they did, they would have to admit that the Smiths were NOT GUILTY! We have a specific set of rules for all who are accused. First & foremost, is the very precious concept that all accused are innocent until proven guilty. Mob rules don’t rule here. Hatred, besmirching people’s names in kangaroo courts of law do not rule here. Many brave people have died for centuries to grant us,all of us, these very basic concepts. In some countries you are guilty when accused, given a sham trial, then executed or thrown into holes of despair called prisons. There, flooding hate by mobs without all of the facts will win, anarchy will rule. But the Smiths refused to crawl away under the barrage of hatred, the threats against them, the attacks on who they were & fought for the truth to come out. And it did & they won! No 800+ photos, no scandalising secrets, no mountains of tortured animals. Only the truth & a family who stood up to prove it. Mr. & Mrs. Smith, my hat is off to you. Hopefully in a couple of years, I can proudly buy a shepherd or a collie from you.

  7. Yea! Congradulations, Paul and Jessica (the attorneys that fought the fight with the Smith’s)! Most of the HS’s victims don’t have time to think, much less find competant, knowledgable attorneys to fight this kind of ‘civil seizure’. The HS fights getting the case heard before a jury because it brings all their twists and turns of the ‘legal process’ into the light.

  8. Even with the victory, don’t let your guard down. Anyone & everyone who supported the Smiths could become targets of their hate movement. And I don’t mean just be hate talk on fb. I don’t trust these AR extremists. They don’t seem to care about the law, still making threats towards the Smiths, threatening to hide, transport out of state the dogs, cover up the ID of all who have the dogs. I feel that the major groups involved in the seizure of the dogs should have to put up “warranty bonds.” These bonds would be large cash sums, titles to their home, other properties, cars, businesses, etc. Those bonds would insure the safe return of the dogs, guarantee they had not been altered. And for every dog that they don’t return or every dog altered or have it’s value decreased by their actions, they loose parts of there bond. If they choose to cover up who has the dogs, then they should be held totally, financially responsible for every single dog & every hair on every dog. They took them, they are responsible for their safe, healthy return.

    • Any interference with the return of these animals will put these so called ‘rescuers’ in contempt of court and warrants WILL be issued for their arrest. Not only will they be in harms way but they could easily put the dogs that they THINK they are protecting, in harms way.
      I wish these people would read the requirements of the new Texas breeder law…They asked for it and ALL breeders are required to register and met those requirements…READ THOSE REQUIREMENTS!!!-And shut the Hell up!!!
      The court ruled and the dogs MUST be returned in a timely fashion!!!

      Take it up with your congressman if you don’t like what they passed…The Smiths can easily meet those requirements!!!

  9. I agree with snapping turtle and his/her comment above. I live close to the Smith’s and you would not believe the talk about how these dogs are going to “run away” or otherwise disappear. I don’t even think the HSWT even kept accurate records of where the dogs were fostered, and I have heard that some of the dogs could already be as far away as Canada. Can the AR lunes even find all the dogs? Heck no. They never thought they would have to give them back and didn’t keep accurate records. I hope Mark and Sandra sue the pants off of everyone of these AR crazies and yes, as topcatsroar said, Mark and Sandra will easily meet the new Texas breeder laws. Heck, they PASSED AKC inspection on Aug 30 and had their dogs taken on Sept. 28, for pete’s sake.

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