Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Who hired this guy, anyway? (Oops - sorry, Skip)

The upsetting story of the cat allowed to die within the walls of Dallas Animal Services has a new chapter. From today's online version of the Dallas Morning News, updated at 11:10 pm:

Dallas shelter manager on leave over cat's death inside wall | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | Latest News

Posted 11:10 PM CDT on Tuesday, August 10, 2010
By RUDOLPH BUSH / The Dallas Morning News

The manager of the city of Dallas' animal shelter was placed on paid administrative leave Monday while he faces charges of felony cruelty in connection with the death of a cat at the Westmoreland Road facility.

Tyrone McGill, 59, was indicted by a grand jury late last week, accused of failing to act to save a cat trapped between two walls at the shelter. Despite repeated requests from employees, affidavits say, McGill never tried to rescue the cat, who was heard crying and scratching at the walls before its death.

The case has called into question the management and day-to-day operations of the once-lauded shelter.

McGill, the shelter's manager for about two years, acknowledged when the took the position that he was not trained or experienced in handling animals, according to Skip Trimble, chairman of the city's Animal Shelter Commission.

"When we met, he admitted he knew nothing about animals, but that he was eager to learn. ... I have to say that I am shocked. But it's true he didn't have animal experience," Trimble said.

While I should point out that McGill has not been convicted of anything yet - I'm really tired of media convictions, especially when a jury ends up acquitting - he is obviously not the only one to blame for all this. Why on earth was McGill hired in the first place?

And when was the shelter "lauded"? Nobody I've spoken to, including plenty of rescuers who have spent their lives in the DFW area, can remember a time when Dallas Animal Services was anything other than a killing factory.


Anonymous said...

Fancy new shelter was lauded by Elba Garcia!! for being GREEN.

NOW...Tyrone already worked for the City he was moved to replace McDaniel because he "spilled the beans" in the Enquirer. Several of "us" have wondered if Tyrone was SET UP.....its that or he is being thrown under the bus. He had a military background so think "orders are orders" mentality on top of it.

Did someone else want his job? or maybe just want him GONE?

Where was Jonnie England that week? AS I understand it she is the shelter commission person who spends time at the shelter. Where was Robertson that week? How many restrooms do they have in that building, I know there is one by the big meeting room on the West? side of the building, is that where the break room is too, I can't remember.

Feline Provocateur said...

Certainly it's possible that McGill was set up. The grand jury system is notoriously easy to fudge.

Most of you have probably already heard the observation that “A good prosecutor could get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich.” Maybe the other shelter employees just wanted McGill out.

On the other hand, any half-competent manager would have spent some time on the shelter floor each day, and should have heard the cat's cries. Just my two cents.

As to where Jonnie England's and Kent Robertson's whereabouts during all this, your guess is as good as mine.

PJBoosinger said...

Dumb and Dumbest
Dumb hired someone with no animal experience
Dumbest was leaving a dying cat inside a wall. No training needed on this one. How many working brain cells does it take to know that's WRONG?

Anonymous said...

Kent Robertson was in California burying his mother.

Feline Provocateur said...

My condolences to Robertson, then.

However, someone at City Hall should have had the courtesy to tell local reporters that he was on personal leave. It would have stopped the current speculation regarding his possible firing.

And why would this need to be published anonymously? Just wondering.

Anonymous said...

So if he was gone on a family emergency all the more reason to ask why the ASC people weren't around to check on things? Don't tell me they went with him to hold his hand in California!!

Anonymous said...

I heard that the Dallas City Attorney called mandatory meeting of all DAS staff to City Hall to address the harrasement, bad mouthing, etc. of the witnesses. Evidently, DA found out about the harrasement of witnesses, called City Attorney and said it best stop as this is tampering of witnesses.......and Mary Suhm, what the heck is she doing and is it true she makes $300K per year? What does she do?

rosebud said...

All I can say regarding Mr. McGill, is that he was professional, courteous, and accommodating during the ordinance debacle two years ago. He was one of the few individuals that would actually sit WITH us and speak. We had "meetings" with others, but never where they really listened. Tyrone was an "outsider" but sometimes in the sheltering "business", that's NOT a bad thing...sometimes you don't want them dragging along old, tired, sheltering ideas and policies. In my heart of hearts, I cannot believe that Mr. McGill is guilty of letting this cat die. I know that there is much more to the story. And knowing him, and knowing the city, and knowing how their politics work, it is highly likely, that Mr. McGill is the one to "throw himself on his sword" in exchange for the indictment (and possibly no trial, or reduced penalties...) in exchange for someone else, or the city, to save face. He has not been fired...he has simply been reassigned WITH pay. My guess is he'll turn up in another department once the dust has a chance to settle down. I don't know what happened, probably never will, and it is possible for people to NOT be what we thought they were. But I'm hard-pressed to believe that Mr. McGill is actually guilty.

As for Mr. Robertson mother's passing, my sincerest condolences. He would tell you, (and does...) that she was the reason he became involved in animals...it was her love of them that drove him to do what he does.

Anonymous said...

Tyrone McGill is a snake (sorry, reptiles!). I once believed he was honest and trustworthy, then learned very quickly that he lies and his demeanor can change on the dime. City Attorney's office is no better, just as guilty. Glad Kent is gone, wish Tryone was headed out, and there were some ACO's following them out the door. It is criminal what they've done and have been doing. No one cares when it's a one-off injury or death that doesn't get much media coverage, but boy when it does get some coverage, folks swoop in to "own" the cause.