Domestic Violence Animal Rescuer/Activist Under Attack In Rural Tennessee County (Cumberland)
Howard (Zeke) Loftin started Tennessee's only safe haven animal rescue in the state several years ago. He has saved thousands of animals in his lifetime and over 1000 in Tennessee alone in the past few years. He takes in the animals of domestic violence victims and holds them and cares for them while the victims are in domestic violence shelters or a safe place. he also took in animals of soldiers during the massive deployment from Tennessee after 911. He also assisted in hurricane Katrina housing dogs in his park like shelter in TN. In his big 73 International school bus painted like an American Flag Stories of this man abound on the internet, search "Road Home Animal Rescue" He has stories of incredibly dangerous and groundbreaking rescues with stories by PETA, HSUS, PET-ABUSE.COM His shelter was 1-800-save-a-pets shelter of the month chosen out of all the shelters in the United States. Now this small little man (5'6", 138#) is fighting for his freedom facing over 20 years in prison for hitting an old dresser and a wooden sawhorse with his truck fleeing men who had previously at Zeke's animal shelter beat him until his nose was broken and he was unconcious then robbing him. Small town, good ole boy politics and law enforcement are trying to bury him in erroneous charges. This rescuer/activist who is respected around the world has been robbed of his dignity, property, and now this rural county is going for his freedom to prove a poit. ANIMAL ACTIVISTS NOT WELCOME IN RURAL TENNESSEE. Search the Cocke County cock fighting case to see rural Tennessee politics in action. Please sign and help this man known for his sense of humor, and funny hats and vehicles and above all saving thousands of animals. Let Tennessee know this is unacceptable behaviour for any law enforcement agency or parks department to harass and ruin a man who is simply trying to make things better for women, children and animals. See Zeke's MYSPACE site by searching myspace for Zeke Loftin or to help support his legal fund.
Domestic Violence Animal Rescuer/Activist Under Attack In Rural Tennessee County (Cumberland)
Howard (Zeke) Loftin started Tennessee's only safe haven animal rescue in the state several years ago. He has saved thousands of animals in his lifetime and over 1000 in Tennessee alone in the past few years. He takes in the animals of domestic violence victims and holds them and cares for them while the victims are in domestic violence shelters or a safe place. he also took in animals of soldiers during the massive deployment from Tennessee after 911. He also assisted in hurricane Katrina housing dogs in his park like shelter in TN. In his big 73 International school bus painted like an American Flag Stories of this man abound on the internet, search "Road Home Animal Rescue" He has stories of incredibly dangerous and groundbreaking rescues with stories by PETA, HSUS, PET-ABUSE.COM His shelter was 1-800-save-a-pets shelter of the month chosen out of all the shelters in the United States. He was chosen rescuer of the month on a myspace Steve Irwin Tribute page. He has been on the front page of numerous newspapers and done countless Television and radio shows both local national and international. Things were going fine for this man until he stepped up and did a rescue that PETA referred to as, "one of the worst," that year and "jaw-dropping." Peta started an action alert that diverted multitudes of calls to the circuit D.A. and Judge working 5 of the poorest counties in TN. or the nation for that matter. The action alerts inundated the judge and D.A.'s offices and made Mr. Loftin unofficialy unwelcome in 5 of the 95 counties this man served with his small shelter for the animals of domestic violence victims. Though the man who starved 17 animals to the point that one dog was DOA and partially consumed. Feces in some areas was 10" high. The local sheriffs department refused to enter without respirators yet Zeke and his team entered with nothing but disposable surgical masks and brought out 16 animals. The cats had been eating aluminum foil. 4 animals had to be put down due to neurological damage. The abuser in this case Paul Riehl admitted douseing his wife with gasoline and trying to ignite her and starveing the animals. Zeke feels that PETA's action alert made the judge angry and giving Mr. Riehl a slap on the wrist 90 days in jail and no fines. This was with 18 felony charges later reduced Mr. Loftin feels his team started to be harrassed by law enforcement after this causing many to stop volunteering at the shelter. When an International alert was put out about 100 starveing and dieing horses in the county neighboring the 5 counties the previous D.A. and Circuit Judge worked it happened to be the county in which Mr. Loftin operated his domestic violence shelter. PETA contacted Mr. Loftin about assisting in getting media attention to this situation since it was being denied on all levels that it even existed although numerous reports were made, even one by PETA approximately 10 days prior. When Mr. Loftin called the situation was denied to exist as well by the Cumberland County Sheriff's office. Mr. Loftin became aware that the situation did indeed exist and called in his media contacts as PETA was busily distributeing an action bulletin to swamp the Cumberland County Sheriff Butch Burgess and County Mayor Brock Hill's offices with people demanding action. The fact that the sheriff's department, local humane society, (also funded in part by Cumberland County,) and virtually very other office denied this situation which was so heavily reported existed indicates there was more to this story than anyone is currently admitting to talk about. After the media exposure brought on by Mr. Loftin he started receiving harrasment from the local law enforcement both State, County and the City of Crossville. All of these officers it is believed reside in Cumberland county. Mr. Loftin was repeatedly followed by deputies and at one point deliberatly turned down a dead end road and the deputy had to back up in oreder to let Mr. Loftin's truck pass. They have taken savage assaults to his character verbally as well. Mr. Loftin was arrested for running over a wooden saw horse and old dresser while fleeing from two men who had previously beaten and robbed Mr. Loftin to the point of breaking his nose and into unconciousness. They ripped a gold chain from Mr. Loftins neck so hard the imprint of the chain was imprinted into Mr. Loftins neck and they destroyed the office of the animal shelter. Though both gentleman were arrested they had bonds of about 1000.00 When it came time to subpoena Mr. Loftin to court the deputies claimed they had the wrong adress which on the subpoena reads 412 instead of 400. A simple run of his drivers license would have cleared this up and ALL of them knew where the animal shelter was. It apppears they did not WANT to allow Mr. Loftin to pursue prosecution of those who robbed and beat him. One of these men had put Mr. Loftin into the hospital a few years before also beaten by this man. Though when Mr. Loftin hit the wooden saw horse and old dresser in the parking lot NO HUMAN WAS HARMED NOR NEAR THOSE OBJECTS he was charged with Aggravated assault (2 counts) bond $20,000.00 for hitting an old dresser and wooden saw horse in a parking lot. The same two men who had savagely beat him had called in a simple vandalism charge (as per the arrest warrant,) and the deputy upgraded this to aggravated assault (2 counts). You figure it out! Not long after this charge Mr. Loftin fell from a wooden platform injureing his left arm, back and right shoulder badly. It is believed the same deputy who trumped up the vandalism charges pulled Mr. Loftin into a room after Mr. Loftin asked to be transferred to a hospital in a neighboring county since this hospital had already been officially sited for abuseing Mr. Loftins's termuinally ill mother. The large deputy (Mr. Loftin is 5/6" and weighs about 138) pulled Mr. Loftin into a room and punched Mr. Loftin in his hurt shoulder. Mr. Loftin screamed, "STOP HITTING ME!, (also in the official report,) This hospital had emplyed this deputy to moonlight as their security guard. When a nurse entered the room after Mr. Loftin screamed the report says Mr. Loftin threw a chair at the deputy. (Mind you Mr. Loftin's left arm was so hurt that he required a brace issued by that hospital the following day. and he had a large scar on his right shoulder and numerous bruises. He could barely lift his arms. The deputy brutally pulled Mr. Loftin's arms behind his body with Mr. Loftin screaming in pain and arrested him for assault of a police officer and threw him in jail overnight and Mr. Loftin was released on bond the following day. The bonding company had enough faith in Mr. Loftin to post the $20,000.00 initial bond and the subsequent bond without a penny down. The bondsman was unable to drive Mr. Loftin to Cookeville but Mr. Loftins injuries at this point after lieing in jail all night were excrutiating and he was driven by the bondsman back to Cumberland county ER. Mr. Loftin agreed knowing the deputy would not be there and since he was initially transported by ambulance and had no vehicle he agreed to go. They x-rayed Mr. Loftin and put a supporting brace on his left arm. He went to an MD who said he needed to see an orthopeadic doctor and he is still going for services to this Dr. This is but a small part of the consistant harrassment and failure by law enforcement in Cumberland County to respond and follow up on thefts of shelter property. On one occasion Mr. Loftin was beaten and robbed by a transient who an aquaintance of Mr. Loftin's had allowed to stay with him and the report was taken. they arrested the man on additional charges that night and held him in jail never once looking to see that this was a wanted man by THEM and they turned him loose the following day. let it also be noted that Mr. Loftin purhased a piece of property across from a very influential man in Cumberland County who yelled at Mr. Loftin that he did'nt want a dog pound across from his house and they already had one shelter why did they need two. The man consistantly harrassed visitors, Mr. Loftin and volunteers to the point that Mr. Loftin had to call law enforcement to ask the man to stay off his property and quit harrassing people at the animal shelter. It should ALSO be noted that the Cumberland County State Park also harrassed Mr. Loftin telling him they did not want the animal shelter there though the shelter has often been described as, "park like," by the media. It is unverified but has been reported that the state park manager's brother in law is with the State Police. One of the men who beat Mr. loftin had been living in the same park and had been arrested by the park police for distributing alcohol to minors. And he was so popular in the park that his tent and belongings were saturated with Kerosene and burned while he was gone. He was asked to leave the park and was later arrested IN FRONT of the animal shleter. The same shelter that he would later come to and rob and beat Mr. Loftin. This story just gets more and more involved. It would take a book to acknowledge every incident of harrassment or lack of action to protect Mr. Loftin and Road Home's rights as a citizen.