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Grit, Determination, Heartbreak And Frustration

August 20th, 2014 by jake · 12 Comments

Don’t worry – this isn’t another angry rant!

Thank you, Louisville, for doing the right thing. You’ve renewed my faith that good can prevail.

All these years later, it’s nice to have a bit of breathing room. Nice to feel like a little bit of weight has been lifted from my shoulders.

While this truly isn’t about me (this is where I make it about me, duh), I’ve spent years and years on the Louisville Metro Animal Services (LMAS) beat seemingly banging my head against a brick wall. No one in the media wanted to take me seriously. Folks in Metro Government from Jerry Abramson to Jim King to Greg Fischer have gone out of their way to perpetuate the madness. Even our beloved Tina Ward-Pugh turned a blind eye. It’s been, admittedly, intense and hugely disappointing.

May not seem like a big deal to most people but having been deeply involved since the beginning, it’s rocked my world.

No one wanted to deal with the mountain of messes because it was tough to think about domesticated animals being tossed in landfills, rotting to death, being mistreated, abused, tortured, slaughtered. All on our watch. With our taxpayer dollars. With our cheerleaders like Jerry and Greg knowingly at the helm. It’s understandable.

Years of effort. Tens of thousands of dollars. Thousands of work hours. Coming home time and again with feces and blood under my fingernails, urine and vomit on my clothes. This story nearly broke me on several occasions.

But here we are. Finally. Light at the end of the tunnel.

  • Lou. Metro Council creates committee to look into LMAS complaints [WHAS11]
  • Council Members Launch Investigative Panel Into Louisville Animal Services [WFPL]
  • Council, attorney probing animal services, alleged cruelty [Courier-Journal]
  • Former LMAS employee accused of negligence [WAVE3]
  • Committee to look into operations at Metro Animal Services [WLKY]

Thank you to every mainstream media outlet that’s finally decided to pay attention. You’re doing the right thing and you’re serving your community.

All those years ago I sat in the studio with Francene detailing all that had gone wrong with LMAS. We were both disgusted. The community was disgusted. We were in tears during commercial breaks, devastated by what I had uncovered, unsure of how to proceed. We had no idea the status quo would be maintained for so long, that our community would be so sadly failed by its leaders.

I fought it. Denied it. Tried to run from it. The story always found me, always caught up with me, always roped me back in. It changed me and every relationship I have with every other living being. It was inescapable. Even during a period of major personal turmoil (remember the defamation nonsense? yeah, tons of fun — and a crazy backstory that’s never been told. maybe soon.) in 2011, it haunted me, consumed me.

It even brought this little man into my life:




MILLHOUSE

It caused me to put my money where my mouth is.

I’ll never be the same. Will never un-see the things I’ve seen. May never sleep through the night again.

But I feel like we’re on the edge of change. Thankfully, people like Kelly Downard are finally going to hold those responsible accountable. We’re all going to move forward. Though, this story isn’t over and I have a treasure trove of scandals to reveal.

Who knows? Maybe LMAS will no longer blacklist me and the agency will allow me to promote the animals available for adoption. The sky’s the limit.

Thanks for reading this disjointed personal brain dump. Needed to get it off my chest.

-Jake

P.S. To media folks wondering who was behind that letter about LMAS (Page 1 & Page 2) sent to the county attorney? One of the folks is Rebecca Eaves of the Arrow Fund. Force her to come clean, folks. While she’s done a lot of good in this community, she’s known about the Sadie mess since February and has refused to come forward because she doesn’t want to harm her ability to pull animals from the shelter… and because Greg Fischer’s pal, Allison Woosley, has her scared to death. It’s ridiculous and cowardly. Force her out. Make her come clean. Subpoena her. Haul her to Metro Council and get to the bottom of it. She means well but enough is enough. (If you hadn’t guessed, I’m done with all of these people who can’t be bothered to stand up and do the right thing. If *I* can do it? They can. There’s no excuse.)

Tags: Dogs · Greg Fischer · Metro Council · Metro Government · Scandal

12 responses so far ↓

  • 1 it'sabouttime // Aug 20, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    Fischy will make Sadiqa a scapegoat. I don’t see the lazy local media doing the work Jake and his team has and could it pass with time? Will the ad-hoc committee have the guts to stand-up and air everything or will fishy & crew squirm their way out of it? How do we let the national groups know about the ad-hoc meetings?

  • 2 Tired of grade school reporting style // Aug 20, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    Here’s another example of a good story that descends into the type of writing you would expect to find written by grade school student. The PS portion, should be re-titled BS portion. I am not sure why you find it necessary to malign Rebecca Eaves unless your channeling a former NKL board member. Rebecca is a champion in the community for the plight of abused dogs, and has brought many cases to justice. If she did not reveal information, it either did not have merit to rise to proof in a legal proceeding or I am sure it was attempted to be handled thru another matter. Either way its this type of crap that wreaks the credibility of an otherwise good story.

  • 3 jake // Aug 20, 2014 at 6:45 pm

    Thanks for the personal attacks! And the concern trolling.

    Rebecca Eaves has known about this since February and has refused to cooperate with anyone, refuses to come forward, will not speak openly with Metro Council or other investigators. She allowed it to go on without saying a word. If you call revealing her name as being involved maligning her? That’s on you. When people are complicit in this horse shit, I’m going to call them out.

    Pro-tip: If you don’t like it? Don’t read it.

  • 4 GtownReader // Aug 21, 2014 at 1:44 am

    For good or bad, your companion dog has begun to look like you!

  • 5 jake // Aug 21, 2014 at 7:42 am

    Gtown: That’s the best comment in weeks.

  • 6 jake // Aug 21, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    Have to chime in here again.

    Rebecca Eaves wasn’t maligned. That’s a bullshit assertion.

    She’s been silent because of the problems at LMAS. Because of fear of retaliation. Anyone with a brain can see that. She’s been quiet because she wanted to help animals and wanted continued access to LMAS.

    My point is that she needs to be forced to talk so no one is able to retaliate against her. And I hear she’s going to.

  • 7 Tired of grade school reporting style // Aug 22, 2014 at 10:23 am

    Well good to hear your softening up your comments a little. To the brain reference, many of your readers may infer that Rebecca was the cause of this dogs condition, and eventual euthanasia by previous stories on VV. A large number people active in the rescue community who know the facts do not hold that view. RE is a champion in the community, and I have seen her personally mourn over these dogs. I used volunteer at metro but withdrew my support once Justin left. On the flip side of this issue there has been ALOT of drama in the rescue community over what is the best approach to bring down euthanasia rates with an uncooperative government agency. Lets not publically bash the people on the front lines making a difference, we can’t afford for them to walk away out of frustration.

  • 8 jake // Aug 22, 2014 at 11:19 am

    Not softening anything up.

    Rebecca COULD HAVE saved this dog if she weren’t afraid to speak up at the time. That’s absolutely the case. I won’t let her off the hook for that. She could have absolutely stepped in to resolve this in February but she didn’t. Again, out of fear.

    You folks need to calm the fuck down or have the balls to address me outside of anonymity. Calling someone out for sitting on their hands is not the same thing as saying they’re a terrible person who needs to be drowned in a bucket. Jesus H. It doesn’t mean she’s not a champion or that she hasn’t done great things. Inferring otherwise is on you, not me.

    A large number of people DO hold that view. They know she could have spoken up but chose not to. Because she was afraid. She’s actually still afraid. She wouldn’t be doing anything to jeopardize her access at LMAS now if Kelly Downard weren’t raising hell and she didn’t face potential subpoena. She didn’t even have the guts to sign her name to the letter sent to Mike O.

    Your concern trolling is neither welcome nor warranted.

    Step up and use your real name if this is so important to you. Attach your name to what you have to say.

    You can dislike what I have to say all you want. I’m not holding a gun to your head forcing you to read it.

    But at least I have the courage to sign my name to my words. Which gives me more credibility than you’d like.

  • 9 Disappointed // Aug 22, 2014 at 12:09 pm

    It’s disappointing at best that the leader of an organization that stands against animal abuse did not report this incident soon after they got Sadie. That’s what has happened for other animals in the care of the AF, so why didn’t Sadie get the same treatment? Was she not abused enough or not worth as much?

    Yes, RE has and hopefully will continue to do great things for abused animals but when you have evidence and knowledge of abuse you have to pick a mission; it should always be what is best for the animal.

    Government should always be held accountable for their actions and not be given a pass because of politics.

    Either you stand for something or you don’t. Own it, fix it, don’t do it again.

  • 10 jake // Aug 22, 2014 at 12:12 pm

    I make mistakes all day long, every day. I admit them, try to fix them, avoid them in the future and move on. I expect the same out of people who positions of leadership (yes, it’s my fault for having expectations).

    Additionally, Rebecca Eaves always tells her supporters to report animal abuse when they see it. So… gotta practice what she preaches, too, even if it’s difficult. That comes with the territory when in a position of leadership.

    I’m confident she’ll step up and do the right thing, though. Because that’s the kind of person she is — someone who wants to do the right thing.

  • 11 Tired of grade school reporting style // Aug 22, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    Jake, first of all history shows your a vicious person who uses his blog to be spiteful and vindictive at times. Like a gossip rag. Who needs the Ville Voice drama in their lives. I read your stuff, because I do at times believe you are voice in the community who says things that need to come out. But I know BS when I hear it too. A lot of the animal rescue drama posted on here is the direct opinion of a couple of former NKL board members who you channel. People who are passionate but also a little cuckoo. They would just assume cut off their nose to spite their face, and look down from ivory towers casting judgement on frontline volunteers for any involvement with MAS. This us or them mentality, which made people in the rescue community want nothing to do with NKL long before Ficklin took over. They took Jessica Reids vision, and turned it into some religious like crusade. We are the ones on the front lines saving the dogs. If they want to cast opinions on those of us doing the good work, lets step up and show some leadership instead of running away from NKL when things got tough.

  • 12 jake // Aug 22, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    So why read it, Reb… I mean, oh, anonymous know-it-all? If I’m a vicious person who uses the websites I own to be spiteful and vindictive, like a gossip rag, why are you spending multiple hours per day reading these websites? Why are you literally making me money at this very moment? Not for the reasons you say but because you know what I’m saying is true. And, unfortunately for you, you know I’m right about Rebecca Eaves and there’s documentation to prove it. You’re also panicked that I’ll report on your actions again. UPDATE: What I’m right about: she knew about Sadie before she was killed. Period. And after that, she refused to speak up or to confirm anything when asked about it by individuals in authority.

    What former board members would those be? Be specific. Name names. Tell me who does the thinking for me, oh anonymous genius.

    What former NKL board member has ever trash-talked the frontline folks at LMAS? Many of them are former LMAS employees themselves.

    Who is it, exactly, that I’m speaking with? What was that, again, about gossip? Could it be that you don’t practice what you preach? Surely not! Surely you’re not in the business of petty, grade school speculation.

    This ‘us or them’ mentality is the mentality that’s also pushed by people like Lori Redmon and Sadiqa Reynolds. So… maybe practice what you preach? The people who were upset with NKL prior to the Ficklin folks taking over were pushed by Allison W. Do we need to rehash that? Because we can.

    Jessica Reid had no remarkable vision. Or, what vision she had was abandoned in an attempt to save face, as I have reported for a couple years now. She’s even, on a few occasions, agreed that she was wrong about a number of things… so for that, she gets a lot of credit because she knows enough to admit when she’s made mistakes.

    I am equal opportunity and call bullshit when I see it. Jessica Reid had her hands in some bullshit on the NKL front. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve reported that she mismanaged NKL funds in an attempt to keep things afloat.

    You aren’t on the front line of anything.

    But thanks for the cowardly spin.

    Pro-tip: I know you won’t identify yourself because I’ve already reported on some potentially illegal shit you’ve done. You shouldn’t have accepted the cookies I placed in your browsers that are tied to your IPs. I’ve tracked everything you’ve done since then. From browsing Amazon to to checking your horoscope.

    I don’t do that for everybody. Just people who make it a point to push anonymous personal attacks.

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