Who could forget the story of Roadrunner, the little dog whose owner abused him so badly back in 2014 that he had to have both eyeballs removed?
In case you missed it, the former owner’s criminal case was resolved this week: Kimberly Anderson, 38, of Kansas City, pleaded guilty Thursday to felony and misdemeanor animal abuse and abandonment charges in Jackson County Circuit Court.
The Star’s Glenn Rice reported the elements of her punishment:
— She agreed to enter the court’s mental health division and have no contact with or own any animals in the future.
— She was ordered to pay $200 restitution to the KC Pet Project, which treated and cared for Roadrunner after he was abused.
— She got a four-month jail sentence, but the sentence was suspended and she will have to serve no time if she successfully completes three years of probation.
If she fails to adhere to any of the above conditions, she could be sentenced to four years in prison.
…As much as I’d like to see Anderson spend time in jail, I think this is a reasonable resolution. She’s got a felony conviction on her record (I don’t know if it goes away if she successfully completes probation), which probably will affect her employment options for a long time. Plus, the prospect of incarceration is hanging over her, if she slips up.
Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker deserves a lot of credit for seeing that the punishment fit the crime in this case. Originally, authorities cited Anderson for municipal violations, which would have carried a maximum penalty of $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail. As a practical matter, however, the vast majority of Municipal Court defendants do not get jail time; it’s usually a fine and probation. Peters Baker filed felony, state charges.
I’m not going to recount what Anderson did to this dog, a Tibetan spaniel, but he also suffered a broken pelvis, which a Pet Project veterinarian repaired by installing a plate.
After this incident occurred, in November 2014, I was so upset I went to the city’s animal shelter on Raytown Road to inquire about the possibility of adopting Roadrunner. Not surprisingly, the dog was already spoken for: A Pet Project employee was in the process of adopting him.
Roadrunner reportedly made an excellent recovery and, surprising to me, apparently suffered no psychological ill effects from his ordeal. I assume that like most dogs, Roadrunner offers his owner unconditional love and wants in return only to be cared for, petted and appreciated.
Let’s hope that during the past two years, Kimberly Anderson’s heart has lost its hard edge and that her mental health has improved and will continue to do so during her probationary period.
In a review of a new book about table manners, Dwight Garner of The New York Times took issue with the author’s conclusion that it was OK to have one’s cellphone on the table at a restaurant, provided the screen is facing down.
Garner’s response to that ridiculous notion:
“I am experiencing outrage fatigue. The best cellphone maneuver I’ve heard about — it is supposedly seen at some restaurants in Silicon Valley — is as follows: Before ordering, everyone places his or her cellphone in a pile at the center of the table. The first person to retrieve a phone must pick up the tab.”
When I went to the Chiefs-Raiders game a week ago Thursday, the decibel level hit 142, even with the crowd gloved and bundled in 20-degree temperatures.
Tomorrow, I doubt the number will get close to 142. The temperature at game time tomorrow — noon — is supposed to be 5 degrees. About the time the game ends, 4 p.m., it’s supposed to be all of 13 degrees.
I look for a crowd tomorrow of no more than 50,000, instead of the usual 70,000 or so. If you want to go to a game cheap and don’t mind freezing your butt off, you can go out there and probably buy good seats at the curb for $5 or less. Some people will be giving them away, maybe even club-level seats.
I thought about going out and trying to buy a club-level seat on the cheap but ultimately decided against it. I’m afraid I’d be chilled to the bone before I got to the club.