Zoo Worker Charged With Attempted Animal Cruelty

WASHINGTON (AP) — Authorities say a researcher at the National Zoo in Washington has been charged with attempted animal cruelty.

According to the Washington Humane Society, Nico Dauphine is accused of poisoning feral cats in her Columbia Heights neighborhood. The charge of attempted cruelty to animals is a misdemeanor carrying a maximum penalty of 180 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.

An attorney for Daupine told WRC-TV that she denies the accusations, saying “her whole life is devoted to the care and welfare of animals.”

Dauphine, who works at the zoo’s Migratory Bird Center, has written articles casting cats as a major enemy of wild bird species.

Court records show she was charged on May 11.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

  • sheriff

    She was doing the area a favor. Feral cats are dangerous. Rabbies & other diseases especially if they mate with domestic cats. Put them all down, flebags.

  • Jeanne Clarke

    Feral cats can be trapped, spay, neutered and released and live out their lives peacefully in a well tended colony. They didn’t need to be poisoned! By doing this, there is no danger of them mating with domestic cats – who should be kept indoors and out of danger anyway! If she had attempted to poison this many “people” her potential sentence would be much stronger!

    • baltimore resident

      how did people get into the issue these are cats not humans think before you post

  • Squaregrouper

    All feral cats should be euthanized. National Geographic listed feral or outdoor domestic housecats as the most destructive invasive species in America.

    • Can't Fix Stupid

      Correct, the illegals are the most invasive species in America. Cat have more common sense and don’t need someone to take care of them.

      • Can't Fix Stupid

        That should have read “Correction, the illegals…”

      • pigeon

        Yeapers – agree 100%

  • Piper

    The feral cats in our neighborhood were “removed” and the rat population virtually exploded. You couldn’t walk down the street without seeing at least two. Thanks, I’ll take the cats.

  • sheriff

    Piper, Where do you live in Spoonie town? Bothe are four legged species & dangerous.

  • Foggy

    I hope Sheriff isn’t mating with anything….stupid is just as dangerous.

    • smartypants

      I agree!! Why is it always the ones who can’t spell or use proper grammar/punctuation that think they know everything??? And think it’s ok to poison animals!!!!

      • baltimore resident

        well if your so concerned smartypants then go out and save every last one and take of them, sorry you only run your mouth and have no action.

    • pigeon

      Foggy, thanks for making me laugh!

  • T

    Does she not know, or know how to find, the number to her local animal control? Sheesh. Disappointing, especially coming from some one whose career is in zoology.

    • baltimore resident

      animal control only does the same thing trap then kill so what is the big problem, she is a citizen and does it they are gov’t and it’s OK???

  • pigeon

    If two legged animals would take proper care of the 4 legged ones and be more responsible then there wouldn’t be such a large problem. Shame on we humans!
    If you want a pet and can’t afford or don’t have the time to have it “fixed” then you should not have one.

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