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Animal abuse case bungled


In a public meeting of the Buckeye Lake Council on September 12, 2016, I complained that Village Prosecutor Mark Gardner failed to work on a case in which a woman abandoned a tiny kitten. I said the case was still lying on Gardner’s desk and that it had been over a year and now it was too late to prosecute.

At the next council meeting (September 26), Mayor Clay Carroll said he talked to Gardner who allegedly said there is not enough evidence to prosecute. His claim was “It’s not on his desk. It’s not pursuable.” I have not talked to Gardner to confirm his conversation with Mayor Carroll but I do have records that show the Humane Officer involved had noted in the 2016 updates that Gardner or his office kept telling the officer that the case was “still being reviewed” which would now be four months after Gardner received the case. Another note states that as of September 2016 the case was Still open. Have not heard from Gardner. The final note states that I told the officer that the case, according to the mayor, was not pursued because of lack of evidence and the note says “No notification to this office of such.” (NOTE: Gardner’s invoices show nothing about him reviewing this case.)

Also in the September 26 meeting, former council member Charlene Hayden spent about six minutes (rules say you can have three minutes) complaining about council not following the rules.

In my opinion, Hayden led the charge with the previous council members and Mayor Carroll by blaming council member Peggy Wells for everything! This meeting was no different EXCEPT that Hayden is no longer on council though it would appear that she is still working Mayor Carroll’s puppet strings, and trying to work the current council, from her seat in the audience. (NOTE: I think we have a great current council with their own minds and, for the most part, no puppet strings attached.)

Here are some of Hayden’s comments with my response in parenthesis:

Hayden: Something needs to be said about the manner in which Mrs. Mansfield and Councilor Wells handled the recent situation regarding the magistrate of our court. (Wells didn’t “handle” this. This was MY complaint. I emailed my complaint to her and asked her to distribute it to the mayor and council to give them a head’s up.)

Hayden: Mayor should have been made aware of this in a scheduled private meeting. (See response above. He knew about it before the meeting….privately.)

Hayden: The Magistrate’s comments were inappropriate but it was also inappropriate to bring such a situation to a public meeting. That is no better than the magistrate treating his clients with disrespect. (The magistrate’s comments were made in a PUBLIC setting and I have been writing about the behavior of the magistrate for FIVE months…waiting for the mayor to get him under control.)

Hayden: I believe the mayor was in the process of evaluating the situation and getting his ducks in a row to be sure the courts would be covered. (It sounds like you talked to the mayor about this previously and may have been misled. The mayor stated, during the meeting, that he had already talked to the magistrate and he was going to clean up his act and that he was not going to fire him.)

Hayden: There is always something that precipitates the behavior that we witnessed. The event was the ticketing of a family member who was going way over the speed limit on one of the side streets. (Here’s where she went too far. I’ve had a couple of family members receive speeding tickets for ALLEGEDLY going over… not WAY over… the speed limit. They did what most people do when they get a ticket, they paid it rather than take time off work to go to court! This has absolutely NOTHING to do with the magistrate’s use of foul language during court sessions.)

Hayden: I think it’s prudent to keep the side streets at 20 mph. (I think it’s prudent to follow the law! You can set the speed limits at 20 mph but do it LEGALLY. Don’t just send a couple of guys with a hammer to pound signs in where you think they should be.)

Hayden went on to talk about the crosswalks being put on St. Rt. 79 (and she thanks only the mayor for that but adds that they give a pedestrian a false sense of security); she thinks having a development director is premature and the previous director couldn’t find enough interest in development to merit the position. She comments, “If you were a developer just researching development possibilities in the village, “What would you think if you read the local newspaper?” (Developers would probably think that the village officials should stop giving me writing material.)

Council member Ruton follows Hayden’s lead and states that she was appalled and ashamed when someone asked her if she was the Ruton that sits on council and they mentioned that the Beacon provides entertainment for them.

More to come…

Bonnie Mansfield
Buckeye Lake

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