Here is one of our blog posts from October 12, 2016 regarding filing complaints to local animal welfare agencies. It pertains to what we believe to be HiCaliber’s willful and illegal killing of horses which were attained with fraudulently collected donated funds.
San Diego County Animal Services were contacted first. That was mostly because as you will see in our earlier blog posts, Michelle Cochran and Romney Snyder related that Officer Dan DeSousa had “told them” shooting horses in non-emergency situations was legal. We contacted him and wanted a simple “yes” or “no” answer if it was legal or not to shot horses in non-emergency situations. He refused to answer and never did answer after being asked multiple times. Come on Dan, its really simple, yes or no?
Dan DeSousa then passed it to San Diego Humane Society/SPCA stating a possible “conflict of interest” because Michelle had been employed by SDCAS until she had a convenient “slip and fall accident” 6 or so years ago which according to her resulted in a traumatic brain injury (TBI) she got a lot of mileage out of.
We have many screen-shots of the exact date of that “accident”. Also information pertaining to her disability payment collection from San Diego County AND a personal injury lawsuit she had filed against a company who we won’t mention at this time. Suffice to say, that personal injury case was dismissed because information came to light that Michelle was perfectly capable of doing a lot of the things she said in the PI lawsuit she couldn’t do – hurt brain and all that.
We think she should be investigated for disability fraud because she collected, and could still be collecting, thousands of dollars in disability payments from the county.
The complaints filed in October regarding felony cruelty to animals was passed to San Diego Humane Society/SPCA and Officer Monreal was handling the case. In the blog at the link above is an email from Romney to the complainants where she is taunting him regarding SDHS doing anything about them shooting horses because they have employees of that agency that are volunteers and fosters at HiCaliber. Complainants indicated to SDHS that they’d trust that that would not be a conflict of interest (employees of SDHS volunteering and fostering for HiCaliber) and to please investigate.
Officer Stephen MacKinnon took over the investigation for SDHS when Officer Monreal didn’t appear to be doing anything – Note: when agencies are apprised of the fact that complainants have thousands of pages of FACTUAL documents and NOT hearsay evidence exposing wrong-doing and the investigating agency doesn’t ask for any of it, THAT is a red flag they are doing nothing). In his quest to sweep illegal activities at HiCaliber under the rug, he came up with guidelines for an organization in Illinois stating it was legal to shoot healthy horses (he had copied and paste what they wrote into an email to complainant. If he had actually read further, or maybe he did and didn’t think the complainant would, they also state that it is not OK to shoot healthy horses in NON-EMERGENCY situations and that a vet should be called). Begs the question of why is he using a pro-horse-slaughter organization in Illinois guidelines to enforce, or not, California laws?
So here we are 8 months later. How many more horses have been shot to death by Michelle Cochran and also Becky Marodi? We also know that at least one of the employees at SDHS that volunteers at HiCaliber is Kat Tarnowski, a primary player at the HiCaliber. We wonder if Kat has also been shooting healthy horses to death too? We refer to these horses as healthy because as part of the lies they tell their adrenalin-crisis-addicted followers is that all those auction horses are examined by a vet upon intake. That would mean they should have vet reports for ALL of the horses they get from the auction. They’ve been asked MANY times over the past couple of years for vet reports that they refuse to post even though they say they have them (kind of like the health certificates and coggins reports for all of the Louisiana horses they have written they have, but they won’t post them either).
The questionable killings of horses dates back long before the Ontario Auction horses and includes a nice old horse named Gorgeous George around Christmas time 2014. They got him from Mikes Auction just days earlier. He was the perfect sympathy donation horse because he had calcification on his knees which in the industry are called “popped knees”. Videos of George walking around were asked for to see if his popped knees were really giving him tremendous pain, or perhaps they were mostly unsightly and any arthritis could be controlled with mild anti-inflammatory medication. They produced a few photos, but those unsightly enlarged knees were perfect for pulling in donations, so of course they show still shots. Not only didn’t they post a vet report, or a euthanasia report, they wouldn’t post videos of him being walked around so concerned people could see what condition he was in.
Many horses have varying degrees of calcification and arthritis in their knees, but it doesn’t mean they want to die. Many people are of the opinion that there were no videos posted of George because he was already dead before they said they were going to put him down. In other words, they were still asking for donations for him.
We wonder if he died via “lead to the head”, or perhaps it was that awful one way trip opportunists in the horse slaughter biz known as kill buyers send them on.
We could go back even farther and ask about their fund-raising for a necropsy for the 7 year old gelding Flynn found dead (supposedly) in his stall in 2014 or thereabouts (we have screen-shots of that fund-raiser too). They never posted the necropsy report even after people asked about it a month after his death. That was the end of it and we never saw or heard anything more about it leading people to believe it was never done. That is fraud.
Some people are posting that “they used to be a good rescue”. The question is when? Talk to the hundreds of people they have harmed through the years and it would become clear that they have always lied in order to collect money from people that believe their self-promotion and hype which often can be proven false. And then theres that reality show-thing and being “celebrities” in rescue.
They have also left a trail of dead horses for years. Luckily, there are people that cared enough to monitor and gather information on their commission of fraud and crimes against horses dating back to at least 2012. They didn’t even file as a nonprofit until October 16, 2013, so there may even be a conflict on how much money Michelle collected for “rescuing horses” before they filed and at the same time was collecting disability payments from San Diego County for her infamous traumatic brain injury. Sure, she can collect up to a set limit in “other income” while collecting disability payments. But how much money she was making before HiCaliber was registered as a nonprofit is in question.
Back to the present, the blog at the link below outlines some terrible allegations regarding cruelty beyond a well-aimed bullet to the brain performed by an experienced shooter (its still illegal if healthy horses are being shoot but at least if someone is experienced we’d hope the horse didn’t suffer). We know Michelle “says” she has a Euthanasia Certificate, but it not only doesn’t include euthanasia administered with a bullet, she hasn’t ever posted it either. Then theres the AHT licensing that she won’t produce.
If you want to truly help the horses at HiCaliber survive and be taken to safety as some rescues are organizing to do behind-the-scenes, its time to type, type, type and email to the people listed below in order to have investigations opened.
And for those that think HiCaliber players can be made to fly-straight, maybe some would if they get in enough trouble, but the leaders in this organization have been hustling for years in our opinion. They will try yet again to land on their feet and move on to a new con if given the chance if people don’t track them.
The veterinarian for California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) Dr. Annette Jones (email@example.com) is also instructing people to file complaints with local animal welfare agencies. That has already been done beginning 8 months ago (how many more horses have been killed and disappeared in 8 months?!?!?) but if concerned horse lovers do as they are being directed by the state to do, maybe the complaints will be taken seriously this time (please see a portion of one of the complaint emails below):
Please send emails regarding possible animal cruelty to:
San Diego County Animal Services (Michelle’s former employer)
Dan DeSousa: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Hill: email@example.com
San Diego Humane Society/SPCA:
Stephen MacKinnon: SMacKinnon@sdhumane.org
Please cc your complaint letter to Officer MacKinnon to:
Please be aware that the people listed above have a bad, unethical habit of sharing confidential information with those being complained about. With enough people filing complaints, there should be less to worry about regarding speaking the truth and being concerned because you will not be the lone voice in the wilderness trying to protect innocent horses.
There were several emails exchanged with Stephen MacKinnon that illustrated clearly that he didn’t want to do anything regarding enforcing California cruelty laws. Additionally, he never asked for any of the thousands of documents that we indicated were available regarding providing factual proof of wrong-doing by HiCaliber, Michelle Cochran, Romney Snyder and others at the HiCaliber.
Below is just one small portion of the conversations attempting to get this guy to do his job that he’s paid over $100,000 annually to do:
You then wrote “Assuming your question was actually is it legal to shoot a horse when there is no emergency present, that to would be legal. I can easily point to other rescue organizations nationwide who euthanize animals in their care simply because they are over-populated. …we understand that there are other organizations throughout the country that euthanize when they are over-populated, are unsuccessful in adoptions or fostering or are encountering other issues not directly related to health and behavior.” So lets talk about these statements.