Oral Argument In Dog Trapping Case To Be Held Next Week

We are pleased to announce that there has been an exciting development in the CWE’s ongoing litigation, Liddle v. Clark, et al. As you may be aware, Ms. Liddle filed a lawsuit against DNR (Indiana Department of Natural Resources) when her dog, Copper, became ensnared and died in a raccoon trap hidden in Versailles State Park. This situation occurred as a result of DNR’s practice that allowed commercial fur trappers to use public lands for trapping without informing the public.

Photo: Massimo Catarinella/Wikipedia

Photo: Massimo Catarinella/Wikipedia

Yes, this policy enabled trappers to scatter these deadly devices throughout Indiana State Parks without so much as a cautionary warning of the obvious danger to families (and pets).

On April 25th, 2018, the Indiana Court of Appeals’ Chief Judge Nancy Vaidik scheduled an oral argument that will enable CWE to further develop two important issues: 1) that the trial court improperly limited the value of Ms. Liddle’s beloved companion to the value of a replacement dog, and 2) that the trial court wrongfully rejected the argument that DNR’s policy that allows commercial fur trapping on state park properties is an improper use of these public lands.

This appeal will build on the success of CWE’s victory in 2017, in which the Marion County Superior Court #2 ruled that the State of Indiana was negligent for failing to make any effort to warn park patrons that their employee, a commercial fur trapper, had maintained hidden wildlife traps throughout Versailles State Park.

This appeal has great significance for animals and the public’s use of state parks.

As a public interest organization, CWE is both honored and grateful that the Appellate Court appreciates the significance of Ms. Liddle’s claims and welcomes further discussion surrounding these important issues.

On May 25, 2018, the Indiana Court of Appeals granted Liddle’s Verified Motion to Allow Appellant Thirty Minutes for Oral Argument. The oral argument will take place on June 8, 2018 at 1:30 (ET) and is scheduled for web-cast at: www.IN.gov/judiciary.