Star-Advertiser: ‘Slayer of Peacock Decided Not to Sue Condo Association’

Star-Advertiser 2/13/14

Question: Whatever happened to the lawsuit that was supposed to be filed in the aftermath of cruelty-to-animals charges against the woman who killed a peacock with a baseball bat in 2009?

Answer: In January 2011, Sandra Maloney, who was 70 at the time, was found not guilty of second-degree animal cruelty for clubbing a peacock to death outside her Makaha Valley Towers home. Under the law at the time, second-degree animal-cruelty charges applied when intentionally killing any animal — other than insects, vermin and pests. Maloney’s attorney, Earle Partington, argued that peacocks were pests.

Partington said his client is living “happily in retirement.”

When cleared of the charge, Maloney said she planned to sue the condominium association for not taking care of its peafowl problem. But Partington said she has since changed her mind.

“She probably thought in the end it just wasn’t worth it,” he said.

The incident prompted lawmakers to make clarifications to animal-cruelty laws.

Senate Bill 1533 — informally referred to as the “peacock bill” —was introduced by Sen. Maile Shimabukuro (D, Nanakuli-Makaha) and enacted in July 2011. It clarifies that second-degree cruelty to animals applies if an animal is killed “without need.” It also specifies that insects, vermin or pests must be handled in accordance with standard and acceptable pest-control practices.

Under the new law, Maloney could have been found guilty because she did not use an approved method to get rid of the bird.

Inga Gibson, Hawaii state director of the Humane Society of the United States, said it is standard and acceptable to use a pest-­control professional, or to check with the state for approval of permits and methods for getting rid of pests — such as live trapping and humane euthanasia.

“Our main concern is that people don’t take matters in their own hands,” she said.

Shimabukuro said problems with peacocks should be handled like problems with cats and dogs. Partington, however, still doesn’t agree.

“Peafowl are pests and vermin,” he said. “A sharp blow to the head is (an approved method) by the American Veterinary Association.”

Gibson said she hasn’t been receiving complaints about peacocks in Makaha, even though they’re still there.

“They reproduce like crazy,” Partington said. “At some point, the state has to do something to exterminate them. They’re not endangered animals. They’re pretty, but we have to look at peafowl as feathered rats.”

The law says “extermination of any insects, vermin or pest must be conducted in accordance with standard and acceptable pest control practices,” but killing insects like cockroaches by force — such as with a slipper — is still acceptable, Shimabukuro said.

“You just wouldn’t hit a peacock that way.”

———
This update was written by Joie Nishimoto.

One Response

  1. ALOHA. MY LOVE FOR ANIMALS IS GREAT. THANKS FOR WHAT YOU HAVE DONE. HOW WOULD THEY LIKE IT IF WE DO THAT TO THEM. THEY SHOULD BE RELOCATED. WE ALSO USE THEIR FEATHERS FOR ART WORK, TO LOOK AT THEIR BEAUTY, AND SOMETIMES I HAVE HEARD THEY ARE CONSUMED WHEN A FAMILY WAS HUNGRY AND OUT OF FOOD,
    THIS IS OUR LAND AND IT IS A LAND OF ALOHA, NOT ONLY FOR HUMANS BUT FOR EVERYTHING THAT WAS CREATED. ALOHA AND MAHALO JEANNE RIDINGS DELACRUZ-MAKUAAINA

    Like

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