Help this Veteran save his pigs!
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On Saturday June 29th 2019, Larry Johnson was traveling to his property outside of the city with 3 of his miniature Vietnamese potbelly pigs; Carmel and her two babies. He took them out of the car because on June 29th of this year, it was very hot and pigs are unable to effectively control their temperature without mud or water to roll in. This June in Minnesota was the hottest on record so he stopped to get them some air at the Hiawatha Golf course (4553 Longfellow Ave, Minneapolis MN 55407). He was letting a couple of people who were walking their dog play with the pigs when animal control came and tried to take the pigs. It turned into a bad situation where he was fighting to get to the pigs before animal control. He was able to get Carmel and one of the babies into the car but animal control captured one in a net. The Minneapolis police department was called but they did not take the other two pigs. Larry was given 3 citations, one because Carmel had some dry skin and hair loss, he was given until July 4th to get her seen and treated by a veterinarian. He complied and got documentation from the veterinarian stating that Carmel was in good health aside from the notable minor issues that she would be treated for. The other two violations were about having hooved animals in Minneapolis and interfering with animal control when they were trying to take the pigs (who wouldn’t interfere?). He was given citations amounting to $400 and was given 25 days to either pay them or appeal. He was also told he would be able to get the pig that was captured out of MACC on Monday July 1st but when he showed up there they wouldn’t allow him to take the pig. On July 11th 2019, 11 days after Larry was given the citations and 25 days to comply, somehow Minneapolis Animal Care and Control was given a search warrant for his property. On July 17th 2019, 17 days after the incident, animal control acted on that search warrant even though he was given 25 days. They smashed in his doors to his property with a battering ram and took the other two pigs. He was then given 10 days to come up with around $3400 to even pay for the right to have an appeal. We were able to come up with the money for the hearing after they reduced it to $1137.23 because of his income. We paid the money to MACC on Saturday, June 27th 2019. He was notified on Wednesday July 31st that the hearing would be on Friday, August 2nd at 10am. We had two days to find an attorney after pulling all the strings we could to secure almost $1200 for the appeal. We attended the hearing without a lawyer and unfortunately lost. The next and last step, the only chance of getting the pigs back is coming up with $4364.98 by this Wednesday, August 7th to file another appeal to the court. They gave us 3 business days to come up with this money after we just had to come up with almost $1200 the week prior. I understand that there are some issues with his current housing situation and I am more than willing to help him get that taken care of and provide support to get the pigs vaccinated and relocated to a location out of the city. This is unfair and I am certain that the pigs are suffering being away from their human. As humans, as a city and a community my belief is that we should lift each other up, help each other. We need them to give this man a chance. He is a hardworking veteran that loves his pigs. Lets HELP this man rather than condemn him for being human. He needs help and resources. He nor the pigs deserve to be punished.
MACC contact information:
Ann Thelen: 612-673-6258
Direct number (usually takes you to 311): 612-673-6222
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