Target: Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney of Orange County
Goal: Demand that charges be filed against Ray Haines, alleged animal poisoner
It has been several months since Marc Schroeder’s dogs were poisoned, but no charges have been brought against the neighbor responsible for the incident. Demand justice for Schroeder’s dogs and for animals everywhere—tell the Orange County District Attorney’s Office to bring animal cruelty charges against Ray Haines.
Recently, Haines set out a bowl of dog food saturated with Drano in his backyard. Haines claims that he was trying to kill “nuisance” wildlife. Unfortunately, Marc Schroeder’s dogs, Atlas and Diablito, ate the food. Atlas was saved, but Diablito, a much smaller dog, was killed.
This incident was not only tragic and senseless, but illegal; in the state of California, poisoning animals is against the law. The Coastal Animal Services Authority recommended charges shortly after the crime occurred, but a few months later, a spokeswoman for the District Attorney’s Office explained that the office was reluctant to “rush into a criminal case” without first conducting “a full investigation and review of the law.”
Of course it is important to gather all the relevant information, but Haines has allegedly admitted to the poisonings, and evidence of the crime—including a bottle of Drano and an empty can of dog food—were found on Haines’ property. All of this should constitute adequate evidence to charge Haines with a crime, but the District Attorney still has refused to charge Haines with anything.
Tell the Orange County District Attorney’s Office to send a powerful message and take a strong zero-tolerance stance on animal cruelty. Sign the petition to charge Ray Haines with animal cruelty.
Dear Mr. Rackauckas,
Recently, in San Clemente, California, Marc Schroeder’s two dogs were poisoned after eating dog food mixed with Drano. Schroeder’s neighbor, Ray Haines, claims he left the poison out to kill vermin that had invaded his yard. Instead of killing opossums, however, Haines’ poison killed one dog and made another dangerously ill.
In the state of California, it is illegal to poison any animal—wild or domestic. Haines may not have intended to harm Schroeder’s dogs, but the fact of the matter is that he left poison in his yard with the intention of killing animals. Even if Schroeder’s dogs had not consumed the poisoned food, Haines would still be guilty of animal cruelty.
Given the evidence—an empty can of dog food and a bottle of Drano found on Haines’ property—and the amount of time the District Attorney’s Office has had to look into the issue, criminal charges would not be unwarranted at this point. In fact, the Coastal Animal Services Authority recommended charges soon after the crime occurred.
Please send a strong message that the mistreatment of animals is unacceptable, no matter whether the target is wild or domesticated. Charge Ray Haines with animal cruelty.
[Your name here]
Photo credit: S. Rossi via Fotopedia