Oregon judge won’t allow animals to sue


A judge has tossed a lawsuit filed by animal-rights activists in the name of a once-neglected horse, finding that animals don’t have a right to sue.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports in doing so, Washington County Pro Tem Judge John Knowles on Sept. 17 refused to become the first judge in the nation to grant a nonhuman legal standing to sue.

Lawyers from the Animal Legal Defense Fund had urged Knowles to let the 8-year-old horse sue for lifelong costs of medical care after the horse was discovered in March 2017 covered in lice, 300 pounds underweight and with frostbitten genitals.

Its former owner, Gwendolyn Vercher of Cornelius, was convicted of animal neglect and paid some $3,700 in restitution.

Lawyer Matthew Liebman argued that animals are sentient beings and noted that animals can be listed as “victims” of neglect or abuse in criminal cases.

Police: Man rubbed produce on bare behind – then put it back


A man is accused of rubbing his bare behind on produce at a grocery store in northern Virginia before putting the items back on display.

News outlets reported that 27-year-old Michael Dwayne Johnson, of Manassas, is charged with indecent exposure and destruction of property. A Manassas police release says an employee noticed Johnson grabbing produce, pulling down his pants and rubbing the produce on his behind before putting it back.

It says the store had to destroy several pallets of produce because of Johnson’s actions. A police spokeswoman said the report lists fruit as the ruined produce. Authorities have not released a motive.

Authorities seek rogue rodent on rat-free island

JUNEAU, Alaska

Wildlife officials are working to capture a rouge rodent sighted on a rat-free island off the coast of southwest Alaska.

Alaska’s Energy Desk reported that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and local authorities have set up a game camera and traps on St. Paul Island after a rat was spotted late last month. The Pribilof Islands in the Bering Sea have maintained a rat-prevention program, helping to keep the islands rat-free for more than two decades.

Steve Delehanty, Refuge Manager for the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge, said authorities are hoping to quickly find the invader before it breeds, leading to an infestation.

Associated Press