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Hi! My name is Duke! I am an energetic, loving, oversized lap dog.  I have never met a stranger I did not like- as long as they are willing to give me all of their attention! I am willing to do just about anything as long as I can be with you - walks, cuddles, playtime, naps, you name it! I do not like to be isolated from you but I seem to manage just fine in my kennel while  Read more 
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STREETS TO SHEETS ANIMAL RESCUE DROPS FRIVOLOUS LAWSUIT AGAINST MUTTS & MAYHEM EMERGENCY SEARCH AND RESCUE   (McKinney, TX. 8/1/2019) Mutts & Mayhem Emergency Search and Rescue (MMESAR) is a charitable organization operated by professional volunteers including paramedics, firefighters, veterinarians, and other amazing individuals whose sole purpose is to care for animals in desperate and emergent situations.  MMESAR is a boots on the ground organization who operates a unique and specialized Search, Rescue & Capture Team for animals involved in emergency incidents and for those who are sick, injured, or elusive to capture where other methods have failed.  In June 2018, MMESAR’s Capture Team and Team Veterinarian captured an elusive and dying stray dog at large in Waxahachie, TX.  Good Samaritans who had been feeding him from a distance for over seven months named him “Hobo” (now “Hachi”).  Two days after MMESAR’s capture and after MMESAR’s social media posts were getting attention, the plaintiff demanded MMESAR transfer the critically ill Hachi to them; a dog whom they had never met, but that they claimed they owned due to their previous capture attempts.  Mutts & Mayhem spent over $5,000 saving Hachi’s’ life and placed him in their successful rehabilitation program.  In July 2018, the plaintiff hired a pro bono attorney and filed a lawsuit in Ellis County Court demanding that MMESAR pay them $100,000 and demanded that the court award them custody of Hachi.   At its core, this was an opportunistic-driven lawsuit by a financially motivated group lacking in fiscal transparency.  Over the course of an entire year as MMESAR marshalled its defenses to each petition, the plaintiff amended their petition to change its legal theories, change the facts, and allegedly altered and destroyed evidence in order to pursue the claims, preventing MMESAR from successfully disposing of these claims early on in the litigation.  A flawed justice system allowed the plaintiffs’ attorney to file and continue to pursue frivolous pleadings even after receiving notice and evidence that those claims were not supported by law or fact.   Because of these tactics, the defendants MMESAR incurred a staggering $49,000 legal expense in defending the plaintiffs’ erroneous claim.  MMESAR’s Board of Directors made the decision not to pursue a counter claim against the plaintiff for attorney’s fees and stolen charitable funds for two reasons.  The first being that it would cost in excess of $20,000 to counter sue.  The second being that the plaintiff most likely does not have the funding to pay a judgment should the court rule in favor of MMESAR. MMESAR notified the Texas Attorney General in accordance with Chapter 123 of the Texas Property Code that their charitable interests were suffering substantial harm through frivolous litigation and that charitable contributions made to the plaintiff specifically for Hachi’s medical care had allegedly been misappropriated by the Plaintiff.  MMESAR has since filed reports with the Ellis County Sheriff’s Office, the Internal Revenue Service, the Federal Trade Commission, the Texas Secretary of State, the Texas Bar Association, and the State Commission on Judicial Conduct relating to activities and discoveries made throughout litigation. For an unknown length of time before and after Hachi’s capture, the plaintiff solicited and collected charitable funds that were donor restricted to Hachi’s medical care.  Once MMESAR captured Hachi, the plaintiff was required to transfer those donor restricted Funds to MMESAR by law.  This transaction never happened.  During litigation, multiple requests were made for the plaintiff’s financial statements and donor reports but such records did not exist.  Those contributions were also allegedly collected and deposited into a personal account instead of a business/charitable account.  Instead of pursuing a counter claim against the plaintiff for these missing funds for Hachi, MMESAR decided to let the local, state, and federal authorities handle the issue to avoid incurring additional legal expenses.  Last week, after MMESAR decided to drop their counter-suit for attorney’s fees and missing charitable funds, the plaintiff dropped their lawsuit bringing the case to an end just one month before trail.  MMESAR feels that the plaintiffs’ decision to walk away was a victory because it puts them one-step closer to getting back to work saving lives, which has always been and always will be their absolute focus. MMESAR President, Selena Schmidt said, “This entire situation has been disastrous and our Team feels profound sorrow for the lives that have been lost during the past few months while we were unable to serve due to this frivolous lawsuit.  We are forever grateful for our supporters who stood by our side while we weathered this storm and for your loyal trust in our mission, our culture, and our organizational integrity. Hachi is thriving in rehab and we are looking forward to his visit to Waxahachie in the weeks to come.” Tragically, operations will have to remain suspended until MMESAR raises enough funds to once again support their work. Please consider making a small donation so that they can recoup their operational funding and their Team can get boots back on the ground helping those in urgent need.  To review court documents and other case information, please visit the links below. 
  Live Stream-Press Conference 8/1/2019   (Recorded Earlier)
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