– Case against Michigan community farm owner dropped, new charges emerge (The Washington Independent, July 15, 2011):
But Oak Park was not content to let sleeping dogs lie. They instead reinstated charges against Bass for failing to license her two dogs, reports the Detroit News. Failing to have a dog licensed is a misdemeanor with a penalty of up to 93-days in jail. However, most municipalities, Bass’ attorney Solomon Radner says, drop the charges when a suspect provides proof the dogs are licensed.
– Charges dropped against Oak Park woman over veggie garden (The Detroit News, July 14, 2011):
Oak Park— Charges against the woman who planted a vegetable garden in her front yard have been dropped, her attorney said Thursday.
But other charges against Julie Bass have been resurrected for not having licenses for her two dogs — even though she took care of that issue, lawyer Solomon Radner said.
“This is really nothing other than a personal vendetta against the Basses either because somebody doesn’t like them, or because they had the nerve to fight this unjust prosecution,” said Radner, who plans to file a motion to dismiss.
City officials could not be immediately reached for comment.
Bass was charged with a misdemeanor for growing cucumbers, tomatoes and other vegetables in raised beds in her front yard, leading to a blog and Facebook page — “Oak Park Hates Veggies.”
Last week, her plight went viral, gaining her an army of international supporters.
City officials — who were barraged with emails and even threatening phone calls — have since filed the paperwork to drop the charges without telling Bass, Radner said.
He wondered if they made the move to get the city out of the spotlight.
“Charges are dropped for the time being,” Radner said. “Based on the games the city has been playing, I would not put it past them to drop the charges just to get the media off their back.”
He reported Bass got licenses for her dogs after she was charged in June, and showed the paperwork to officials. Typically, cases are closed after the issue is addressed.
But Radner spoke to an Oak Park city attorney colleague who informed him that the dog license charge is not dead against Bass, something he called “a very dirty move.”
Misdemeanor charges — including failure to have a dog license — typically carry a 93-day jail sentence, Radner said.