Logan vs. OC Animal Care Lawsuit

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OC Animal Care tried to have the  Logan vs. OC Animal Care lawsuit
dismissed outright, the judge allowed the Logan vs. OC Animal Care
lawsuit to proceed and told OC Animal Care outright that Paw
Protectors Rescue and Sharon Logan has legal standing to proceed and
demand OC Animal Care to Comply with CA State Law.

It’s a sad day when you have to file a lawsuit against your local tax
payer municipal, city or county funded animal shelter and then
actually get a court order to force OCAC, OC Animal Care or whatever
OC Animal Care is trying to brand themselves as to sound more Humane
to comply with mandated CA state law.

The Judge’s ruling in Logan vs. OC Animal Care is below.

The Judge in the Orange County Superior Court has allowed a lawsuit
bright forth by Sharon Logan and Paw Protectors Rescue that alleges
retaliation from OC Animal Animal Care and challenges the euthanasia
practices at OC Animal Care to proceed and a trial date has been set.

A demurrer is a pleading in a lawsuit that objects to or challenges a
pleading filed by an opposing party. The word demur means “to object”;
a demurrer is the document that makes the objection. Lawyers
informally define a demurrer as a defendant saying, “So what to the
pleading.”

A judge has allowed a 24 page lawsuit against OC Animal Care to
proceed and move forward, a trial date has been set. The lawsuit has
been brought forth by Paw Protectors a rescue group and Sharon Logan
an individual.

In the Judge’s ruling, the Judge stated:

Respondent Orange County Animal Care’s Demurrer to the Verified
Amended Petition for Writ of Mandate and Complaint for Injunctive
Relief is OVERRULED.
I
Demurrer to Amended Petition for Writ of Mandate

A claim for relief under CCP §1085 has been stated

Logan has alleged facts supporting her standing to bring this claim
and facts upon which relief can be granted.

The two essential requirements for issuance of a writ of mandate under
CCP §1085(a) are 1) a clear, present, and usually ministerial duty on
the part of the respondent, and 2) a clear, present, and beneficial
right in the petitioner to the performance of that duty. California
Correctional Supervisors Organization, Inc. v. Department of
Corrections. (2002) 96 Cal.App.4th 424

Respondent says Logan hasn’t sufficiently alleged either formulation.
This is incorrect.

OCAC says its duties in the management of animals is discretionary,
citing Food & Agriculture Code. This is not correct. Civil Code §1984,
states unequivocally that a depository of living animals [animal
shelter] shall “provide the animals with necessary and prompt
veterinary care, nutrition, shelter and treat them kindly.” The
“policy of the state” is that no “adoptable animal should be
euthanized if it can be adopted into a suitable home.” The criteria
for adoptability are specifically stated. Civil Code §1834.4 Civil
Code 1834.5 states the specific efforts that must be made before an
animal is euthanized, including contacting a non-profit animal rescue
group such as Paw Protectors Rescue. No discretion in the application
of these standards is stated.

Similarly, Penal Code §597f imposes duties upon animal shelters in
connection with abandoned animals.

Finally, OCAC’s reliance on Food & Agriculture Code §17006 establishes
its duties to be discretionary, it does not. This section identifies
conditions under which animals shall not be adopted. Again, these are
mandatory requirements. In fact, as expressly noted by respondent,
Food & Agriculture Code §31852(a)(2)and (b) expressly say that
impounded stray dogs and cats shall be released to a non-profit unless
they fall within the provisions of §17006. The use of a lot of
“shalls” militates against the conclusion that there is discretion in
the application of the law.

As to standing, Logan operates a non-profit. Non-profits are
specifically included in the statutory scheme. Logan alleges she and
Paw Protectors has been “frustrated in its efforts to save animals
from death at shelters, and . . . forced to divert resources from its
regular programs to, among other things, consulting on, monitoring,
and investigating conditions at Defendants’ shelters.” Amended
Petition, ¶3 Logan has suffered direct and particularlized injury to
her “right to rescue animals impounded by the OCAC.” Amended Petition,
¶19 She has been “suspend[ed] from rescuing any animals by [Defendants
Refusal] to release numerous requested animals to allow for their care
instead of euthanizing said animals.” [Amended Petition, ¶15] Since
the statute specifically authorizes nonprofit animal rescue groups to
take animals to prevent them from being euthanized, and since Logan
operates the non-profit, she has a right to the respondent’s
performance of its duties in this regard. To the extent Logan may not
have an individual beneficial interest because her claims may be
derivative of Paw Protectors, she has public interest standing.
Through the statutory scheme, the Legislature has recognized a
substantial public need to prevent euthanasia. Logan certainly has an
argument that she is acting in the public interest. For the purposes
of a demurrer, this is sufficient.

As to the claim of uncertainty, this is an unsupported argument. The
Petition is certain enough.

The conclusion that Logan has sufficiently stated a claim for a writ
of mandate establishes that the Demurrer should be overruled in its
entirety as to all causes of action.

Respondent Orange County Animal Care’s Demurrer to the Verified
Amended Petition for Writ of Mandate and Complaint for Injunctive
Relief is OVERRULED.

Logan-vs.-OC-Animal-Care-Lawsuit

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