Imagine trying to expose animal cruelty and neglect only to find yourself behind bars. That’s what happened to a Texas woman who attempted to get multiple government agencies involved to help a dog that was being neglected.
The dog had been left on a balcony with its mouth tied shut. When Amber Cammack saw this, she began taking pictures, with the hopes that she could get the dog some help.
The dog had been left on a neighboring balcony at her apartment complex in Harris County, according to the Houston Chronicle.
For a week, Amber begged government agencies to intervene.
When they refused to deal with the neglect, she posted photos of the dog – “porch pup” – to Facebook.
One picture she uploaded actually showed the dog wearing a diaper.
But after the pictures began to be circulated, the Harris County Sheriff, Ron Hickman, called her to tell her she was “harassing” the dog’s owners.
He demanded she remove the post. If she refused? He told her that she would be arrested.
“When the sheriff himself calls you and threatens you with arrest that is an extreme chill on your right to freedom of expression,” Randall Kallinen, Amber’s attorney told local reporters.
The Raw Story notes some of the following Facebook responses about the cruelty and the case:
“The dog had a rubber band around its mouth and was on a wood balcony for days without being walked or taken care of!!!” one woman wrote in response. “This dog needs help and if you need a special law for that-there is something very wrong in Harris County! You should be ashamed of yourself!!!”
“This stinks to high heaven,” another user wrote. “Putting a rubber band around a dog’s snout…what is right with that?! At the very least, this poor dog needs to be surrendered to a rescue group. This is so disgusting on so many levels.”
Kim Ogg, a crime victims’ advocate, said that “since disbanding the Animal Cruelty Unit of the Harris County D.A.’s Office, this District Attorney has done nothing to protect animals from senseless cruelty. So few criminal cases have been filed since Anderson took office in 2013, it affirms nothing will be done to stop abusers and leaves the impression that animal cruelty is acceptable.”
“Reports of animal abuse must be responded to immediately,” Ogg added during a press conference. “Delayed response kills animals. No response insures that even more abuse will occur. Putting a complaint form on your website and then failing to follow up on the complaints is worse than doing nothing.”
(Article by Jackson Marciana, and M. David; image adjustments by #Op309 Media; h/t Raw Story)