Ingham County Animal Control & Shelter responds to recent dog seizure in Okemos
On June 27, 2022, Ingham County Animal Control Officers responded to a residence in the 5300 Block of Chantilly Lane in Haslett for a report of a dog bite. Upon arrival, the victim of the dog bite, advised that the neighbor’s dog, Tazz, had jumped his back fence and attacked his Great Dane, Tanooki, causing multiple puncture wounds. Tanooki was taken to a local emergency veterinary clinic for treatment. The complainant further added that he had been bitten by Tazz while trying to pull Tazz off his dog, suffering multiple bite wounds to his shoulder, arms and legs. The victim received medical treatment and a series of rabies vaccinations due to Tazz not being vaccinated against the Rabies Virus. The complainant provided officers with video taken from his home security system that showed the incident and several other incidents where Tazz had attempted to jump his fence and where Tazz could be seen fighting with other dogs in his yard. Officers responded to Tazz’s owner’s residence to interview her on what had occurred. The owner was identified as Darlene Moore. Moore admitted that Tazz had frequently charged the fence in an aggressive manner and attempted to jump the fence on multiple times. She also admitted that Tazz was not vaccinated against the Rabies Virus nor was he licensed. Moore was issued multiple citations for unlicensed dog, dog at-large and dog bite. Moore stated she had been bitten by the Great Dane but declined to press charges against the Dane’s owner. Subsequently, Tazz was seized by ICAC to be held at the Ingham County Animal Shelter pending the ten-day quarantine period as required by Michigan law.
After Tazz was seized, the victim began receiving harassing telephone calls from Darlene Moore. Moore threatened to let Tazz loose on the victim’s minor children and elderly neighbors and warned him to keep his children inside his house. These threats were recorded by the victim and provided to ICAC. In the recordings, Moore identifies herself and does indeed make the reported threats and also states that she intends on letting Tazz run loose as much as he wants. Moore called ICAC on 6/29/2022 and stated she wanted to press charges for the dog bite. A report was forwarded to the Ingham County Prosecutor’s Office (ICPO), but ICPO declined to press charges against Tanooki’s owner.
Because of the threats levied against the victim and the neighborhood and because of Moore’s statements refusing to correct the Tazz’s behavior, ICAC leadership determined that Tazz was a threat to society and pursued an Order to Show Cause Hearing. Moore retained an attorney and the order was fought in court. Tazz was transferred to Nana & Paws boarding facility on August 16, 2022 upon request of the Moore and her attorney. Tazz was to be held there pending the outcome of the civil case. On September 1, 2022, both parties agreed to the following stipulations:
- Tazz would be released from Nana & Paws, Moore would bring Tazz current on vaccinations & licensing and he would not be euthanized.
- Ownership of Tazz would be transferred to Moore’s daughter, Aleks and not be brought back to Darlene Moore’s address on Chantilly.
- Alexa Moore agreed to continue training, have Tazz neutered and submit the training report to Ingham County Animal Control.
- Darlene Moore agreed to pay ICAC $800.00 for costs associated with boarding Tazz to be paid within 60 days of the court order. (Due by November 1, 2022)
On November 28, 2022, Tazz was found by a resident running at large in the area of Okemos & Hamilton roads. Animal Control staff frequently monitor lost & found pet sites and recognized the dog as Tazz from the prior incident. Based on the photos and statement form the resident who found Tazz (he was returned to Aleksa Moore and ICAC was not called) a report was forwarded to ICPO for dog at-large. ICPO declined to issue charges in this case.
On February 14, 2023, Tazz was brought to the Ingham County Animal Shelter by a resident who found him running at-large in the area of Okemos & Grand River. A citation was issued to the Aleksa Moore for dog at-large. Aleksa is scheduled for a pre-trial conference on this charge in 55th District Court.
As of February 24, 2023, both Darlene and Aleksa Moore had failed to comply with the court order from September 1, 2022 so a petition was filed requesting contempt of court for their failure to comply with the agreed upon terms and against Aleksa for the continuous at large issues. Court was scheduled for March 31, 2023 at 9:30 am. An Ingham County Animal Control Officer served both Darlene & Aleksa with summonses in this case. Darlene & Aleksa both failed to appear for the hearing and a default judgment was issued for destruction of the dog. Tazz was seized by ICAC on April 6, 2023 and taken to the Ingham County Animal Shelter where he still remains. Prior to the execution of the order, ICAC leadership decided to hold off on euthanasia to allow the Moore’s to exercise their right to appeal. This hearing will take place at the 55th District Court on Wednesday, April 12, 2023.
For more information on Ingham County Animal Control and Shelter, please contact the shelter at 517-676-8370, visit the ICACS website at www.ac.ingham.org, or visit the shelter at 600 Buhl St. in Mason. ICACS is open Monday through Saturday from 10:30 am to 5:00 pm and is closed on county observed holidays.