Indicted! Austin & Logan Flake, Todd & MaLeisa Hughes

October 16, 2014

Felony & misdemeanor charges filed against Sen. Jeff Flake’s son Austin, wife Logan and her parents

Four long months after the heat-related, suffocation deaths of nearly two dozen dogs at a Gilbert kennel, the owners and caretakers have been charged with multiple felony and misdemeanor counts. An indictment was handed down Wednesday by a Maricopa County Grand Jury.

The Grand Jury should be commended for diligently considering the evidence and doing the job it was impaneled to do —- conducting its business, without regard to politics.

Todd Hughes the owner of the boarding facility, has been a bad actor throughout this despicable saga, lying about the number of dogs involved and initially claiming they merely ran away. The story was later changed to cast blame on the dogs themselves by alleging one or more of the pets chewed through the air conditioning wiring. Hughes and his wife MaLeisa were vacationing out-of-state and left their daughter Logan, and son-in-law Austin, to oversee the care of the pets.

When the Flakes’ returned to the kennel the next day and witnessed the horrific scene, they callously hosed down the dying dogs in a crude attempt to cool them. The carcasses of the dogs were then piled in a storage shed. No professional veterinarians were called to help.

The dogs sweltered to death, packed together  in a steamy utility room, lacking air-conditioning, and without food or water provided for them.

After deputies responded to a call the morning of June 21, 2014, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office launched an extensive investigation and submitted its findings to the County Attorney’s Office on August 27, 2014.  This is Montgomery’s Sept. 10, follow-up press conference. (Courtesy of KTVK-TV3)

The indictment charges Todd and MaLeisa Hughes with 22 felony counts and 7 misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals, and one felony count of fraudulent schemes and artifices. Austin and Logan Flake are each charged with 21 felony counts and 7 misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals.

A hearing for the four defendants is scheduled Oct. 23, 2014.

Seeing Red AZ has covered the deaths of the pets in these posts:

Oct. 13, 2014: Bill Montgomery: Focus of daily’s sarcastic jab remains inert

Sept. 29, 2014: Still awaiting Montgomery’s Flake decision

Sept. 19, 2014: Bill Montgomery: Between a Flake and a hard place

July 17, 2014: 21 dead dogs inconsequential as Flake connection gets cover-up

June 27, 2014: AZ Republic uses dead dogs to bash Arpaio, give pass to Flake & Update


Just one question re: Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi

October 2, 2014

It has now been 185 days since 25-year-old Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi was jailed and held in solitary confinement in Tijuana, Mexico on weapons charges. He had three guns among his possessions packed in his truck as he was moving from Florida to California.

The Marine veteran, diagnosed with post traumatic stress syndrome that has gone untreated, served two tours in Afghanistan. He said he never intended to leave the country but missed an exit when heading to meet friends for dinner at a border town restaurant.

If convicted of weapons charges, he faces six to 21 years in a Mexican prison. Barack Obama has never followed through (news video) on his stated intention to contact Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto to request Sgt. Tahmooressi’s release, although the two have discussed other issues. 

Question: Isn’t it time to cut off foreign aid to this crime-ridden and noxious nation that defies our sovereign border, brazenly disregards our laws and blatantly treats our citizens with contempt? Mexico received $265 million in U. S. taxpayer paid foreign aid in 2013 —- excluding military aid.


Still awaiting Montgomery’s Flake decision

September 29, 2014

A contortionist is described as a performer who peculiarly twists his body for the entertainment of others.

Minus the amusement factor, Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery is beginning to resemble such a nimble acrobat as he attempts to maneuver an end to the case of animal abuse resulting in the gruesome heat related deaths of nearly two dozen dogs. They died while supposedly in the care of Austin and Logan Flake at a Gilbert kennel on June 20.

Such a move would not serve him well. Twenty-one pet owners have joined together in filing a civil suit against four defendants. Besides the Flakes, Todd and MaLesia Hughes, Logan Flake’s mother and stepfather, are named in the suit.

On June 23, Sheriff Joe Arpaio promised a full investigation of the deaths. After an extensive three-month examination of facts, which included veterinarian performed necropsies on some of the dogs, the sheriff’’s office recommended 21 felony charges of animal neglect and cruelty in connection with mistreatment of the pets resulting in death by suffocation. The dogs were crammed in a laundry room without air-conditioning, food or water. When the dead and dying dogs were discovered, the Flakes did not call for veterinary assistance, opting to hose down the dogs and then callously pile their carcasses in a shed.

Arpaio, a champion of animals, has had an Animal Crimes Investigations Unit as part of his office for over a decade. “I’m very confident we have the proper evidence for a conviction,” the sheriff said.

At a Sept. 10 press conference Montgomery exhibited raw insensitivity to the grieving pet owners as he provided insight as to his bent. “This isn’t to cheapen or minimize the loss of the pets to the families,” Montgomery said. “But we’re not talking about the deaths of 23 children.” 

The kennel owners Todd and MaLesia Hughes were on vacation and left the animals in the care of their daughter Logan and her husband Austin.  Austin is the son of Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake —- a man the politically ambitious Montgomery does not want as an enemy. 

Numerous lies were initially told by the Hughes and Flakes, including that a dog chewed through the air conditioner’s power cord after the Flakes left the facility for the night. Owners were also told their pets had run away. No evidence supported the claims.

We are now just two days away from the beginning of October, months away from the blazingly hot June day. Montgomery remains mute. 

Bill Montgomery: Between a Flake and a hard place,” providing insight into the political aspects of his silence, was dated ten days ago.


BP under the federal gun to investigate agents

September 28, 2014

Criminal investigations center on law enforcement agents not illegals

The daily reports that Customs and Border Protection has issued a press release on the alleged assault on a teenage illegal detainee by an agent —- at the specific direction of the agency’s headquarters in Washington, D.C.

The Jan. 30 incident, captured on a security camera video reputedly shows Border Agent Aldo Francisco Arteaga, a nine-year veteran, entering a holding area, confiscating the teen’s disallowed cell phone, and punching him in the stomach. Arteaga is stationed in Nogales, Arizona.  The area is a major portal for illegals and criminal gangs of drug traffickers. 

The article is rife with comments from the expected pro-illegal brigade including ACLU attorneys, a “skeptical” policy analyst at the American Immigration Council and representatives of “human rights” and “immigration rights” groups, expressing doubts regarding prosecution.

Border Patrol Agents are charged as “vigilant protectors of our Nation’s borders,” according to the Mission statement on U.S. Customs and Border Protection website. It neglects to mention that agents are supposed to do their job with one hand tied behind their backs, while being viewed with suspicion by the same federal government that employs them.

The US/Mexican border is a dangerous place. But the Border Agents protecting the U.S. from murderous drug cartels, jihadists intending harm to our homeland and defiant illegal invaders, are vilified by the leftist Periódico de la República de Arizona (Arizona Republic) newspaper —- as we noted in this post last year.

In 2010, the Sierra Vista Herald reported* there had been a marked increase in violence against U. S. Border Patrol agents —- up a stunning 300 percent in the first two months of the fiscal year. The report indicated 108 attacks on agents in the Tucson sector alone. The previous year there were 27 such reports.

This list of U.S. Border Patrol Agents who have died in the line of duty since Dec. 2003 gives an indication of where the actual focus of prosecution needs to be.

*Sierra Vista Herald report no longer accessible


Beheading horror comes to US, but don’t call it terror

September 27, 2014

Muslim convert decapitates Oklahoma woman, stabs another in case of “workplace violence”

In an act of savagery too horrific to imagine, Alton Nolen, just fired from his job at an Oklahoma food distribution plant, engaged in a bit of “workplace violence.” The feds and local law enforcement remain unable to use the term “Islamic terrorism.”

Shouting praise to Allah, Nolen decapitated Colleen Hufford, 54, and stabbed Traci Johnson 43. Johnson is hospitalized, as is the knife wielder, who was shot by an off-duty reserve deputy employed by the business.

Employees of the plant said Nolen had been attempting to convert co-workers to Islam. 

So what does Adam Soltani, executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) in Oklahoma, say about these actions? In his statement he refers to the savage murderer as a “gentleman.”

“It’s really unfortunate that there’s a lot of attention on Muslims these days for actions of people who are either part of extremist groups or who have extreme ideas. However, Islam is clear on what it stands for. Islam stands for peace, Islam stands for justice, Islam stands for love for humanity, compassion and mercy. What this gentleman did in Moore, which is inhumane and barbaric, is definitely not a representation of what our faith teaches and we hope and pray that justice will be brought against the perpetrator soon, so that the victims and their families can find some sort of solace in that justice.”

In an added insult ABC News consultant and former senior FBI agent Brad Garrett, described as having extensive experience in criminal profiling, opined that on the surface the incident appears to be “workplace violence.”

The Oklahoman newspaper used the same foolish language in its report.

Former Army psychiatrist Nidal Hasan has been sentenced to death for the 2009 Fort Hood Army base massacre that left 14 dead and 32 wounded. Prosecutors argued the attack was a “jihad duty” under his Islamic faith, and witnesses reported him yelling Islamic blessings as he gunned down his fellow soldiers.

But Pentagon officials classified the attack as a “workplace violence” incident, arguing it did not meet the criteria for a terrorist or combat attack.

The victims are still struggling to get medical care and benefits they would receive now and into the future if this slaughter were classified as an act of terrorism, according to this report in the Navy Times.

White House officials declined a request from the victims of Hasan’s evil to meet with Barack Obama and discuss their ongoing difficulties.


GOP voters dissatisfied with party’s amnesty stance

September 24, 2014

Two new polls stand as evidence of a dramatic shift in priorities among Republican voters as they assess their party leadership.  A newly released Pew Research poll finds that a majority of Republicans think their party is not representing their views on illegal immigration. 

Just 37% of Republicans and self-identified Republican “leaners” think the GOP is doing a good job representing their views on illegal immigration while a massive 56% say the party is not doing a good job.

These findings follow last week’s Gallop poll which also indicates illegal immigration and its costly repercussions has grown to the leading concern among Republicans.

Despite these numbers, the establishment elites in the Republican Party continue to press for what they now slyly refer to as a “piecemeal,” or incremental approach to implementing comprehensive amnesty legislation which would further alienate the GOP base. 

In fact, the issue is eclipsing all others. What many now refer to as the “illegal invasion” rose from 4% to 15% among all adults as the top problem. Gallup reported that “in the past three months, 20% of national adults who self-identify as Republican named illegal immigration as a top issue, compared with 8% of Democrats. In the first half of the year, a nearly identical 4% of Republicans and 3% of Democrats referred to the issue the country’s most important problem.”

The poll found that a third of Republicans (33%) say their party has not done a good job on illegal immigration because it is too willing to allow foreign nationals living illegally in the U.S. to gain legal status.

Republicans who believe in the rule of law are speaking. Are their members of congress listening?


Bill Montgomery: Between a Flake and a hard place

September 19, 2014

Career aspirations of political animal run headlong into the carcasses of dead pets

So what do you do when you’re the chief prosecutor in the most populous county in Arizona and the country’s most renown and fearless sheriff sends you felony recommendations following a completed investigation?

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio did just that recently, forwarding twenty-one charges of animal neglect and cruelty to Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. The recommendation of charges came after an arduous and professional three-month investigation related to the heinous deaths of dogs supposedly being cared for at a Gilbert kennel bearing the menacingly funereal name Green Acre.  Arpaio, a champion of animals, has had an Animal Crimes Investigations Unit as part of his office for over a decade.

Todd and MaLeisa Hughes, the owners of the kennel, were vacationing in Florida, leaving the  dogs in the care of their daughter Logan and her husband Austin. When they returned, Todd Hughes initially told the pet owners their dogs had all run away.  Later they claimed the deaths of nearly two dozen dogs were the result of an accident when a dog chewed through an air-conditioning electrical cord, disabling the unit. The dogs died an agonizing death, suffocating in the small utility room in which they were crammed together on a searingly hot June day. The dead dogs were then carted out to a storage shed where they were callously dumped.

The veterinarian who performed necropsies on some of the dogs indicated suffocation was the likely cause of death. 

Austin Flake is the son of Arizona Senator Jeff Flake. And this is where things begin to get dicey.

Montgomery has career aspirations that are rumored to include the state’s second senate seat, when McCain finally moves on. Obviously how he chooses to handle this widely scrutinized case could have devastating consequences for his ambitions.

At a recent press conference in which he exhibited raw insensitivity to the grieving pet owners, Montgomery gave more than a few clues (video) as to his bent. “This isn’t to cheapen or minimize the loss of the pets to the families,” Montgomery said. “But we’re not talking about the deaths of 23 children.” 

Oddly, Montgomery used the occasion to slam his predecessor‘s administration, and repeatedly said there are no assurances of convictions, becoming a broken record stating the office standard of a “reasonable likelihood of conviction.”

The harshest punishment Austin and Logan Flake might receive is the inability to ever own an animal in Maricopa County. No joke. The Maricopa County Attorney actually noted that as a potential penalty.

Okay. We get it. When the prosecutor sounds more like a public defender, expressing concerns over what the “impact to someone’s life in the future” might be after being charged with a felony, it becomes all too clear that Montgomery sees his own future looming before him. If it crashes or soars could well depend on 21 dead pups and a couple of rabbits.


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 338 other followers