Mayor Gary Brown and the City of Salem MO: Do the right thing and Move to Vacate the Order to Execute Phineas
  • Petitioned Mayor Gary Brown

This petition was delivered to:

City of Salem
Mayor Gary Brown
City of Salem
City Administrator Clayton Lucas
Missouri Senate Representing City of Salem MO
Senator Dan Brown
Missouri House of Representatives Representing City of Salem MO
Representative Jeff Pogue
City of Salem
City Attorney William Camm Seay
City of Salem
City Clerk

Mayor Gary Brown and the City of Salem MO: Do the right thing and Move to Vacate the Order to Execute Phineas

    1. Ruth Elledge
    2. Petition by

      Ruth Elledge

      Jefferson City, MO

On June 22, 2012, a Golden Lab named Phineas was seized from his home and family in Salem MO following a report that he had bitten an eight year old neighbor who had entered his yard. A photo of the bite indicates that it was hardly a nip and did not even break the skin.

The family of Phineas retained an attorney and brought action against the City of Salem to have Phineas returned to them. From the time of his seizure and for nine months, Phineas was confined in doggie jail. Written testimony from the boarding facility caring for him and submitted to the City states that he was anything but vicious.

On March 22, 2013, Phineas was removed by Animal Control to an undisclosed location following issuance of an order by Judge Scott Bernstein of the Dent County Circuit Court. In that order, he stated:
"The Court finds that Phineas, the Labrador Retriever owned by the Plaintiffs is in fact a vicious dog as defined by Defendant's City Code under Section 5-15 in that Phineas without provocation on June 22nd, 2012 bit (minor child - name withheld.) The dog shall be humanely euthanized."

When the Judgment was brought to the attention of Missouri animal welfare representatives on April 15, 2013, investigative work began and it became evident to them that Phineas had been wrongly condemned and convicted. Legal assistance was retained to overturn that judgment.

The Save Phineas Facebook page:

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 75,000 signatures
    2. City Administration Building 400 N Iron St, Salem MO 65560

      Ruth Elledge
      Petition Organiser

      Please attend this meeting if you can to show your support for Phineas!

    3. Reached 3,000 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Amnéris Maroni SãO PAULO, BRAZIL
      • 3 months ago

      Beacause I don´t tolerate injustice

    • Patti Jarvi-Dumoulin WINDSOR ONTARIO, CANADA
      • 4 months ago

      Let Phineas go back to his family. Phineas only nipped a child not bite it...this is ludicrous.

    • Michelle christle TUCSON, AZ
      • 4 months ago

      i do not think it is appropriate to kill an animal that has been proven not to be vicious. this is important to me because killing of animals is wrong and travesty of justice.

    • brad johnson UNION, MO
      • 4 months ago

      The dog was doing what it instinctively is born to do, protect its pack. the dog does not deserve this fate!!

    • Bob Baker ASHLAND, OH
      • 4 months ago

      Common sense must prevail. Let this family be reunited.


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