Hampden man's bird-feeding leads to $100 fine

April 19, 2000|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

A Hampden man was fined $100 and ordered by a judge to stop feeding birds and animals in his yard after neighbors complained he was attracting vermin.

Emmett Molloy, 59, said yesterday that the District Court ruling contradicted his "constitutional right" to feed birds, squirrels and other animals on his property, but agreed to obey Judge Nancy Suger's order in a contempt hearing Monday.

"He wanted to do his part to help out the environment," said Jamie Marthaler, Molloy's lawyer. The judge urged Molloy to find other ways of doing so.

Since 1998, she said, Molloy and his neighbors on West 37th Street have been at odds over his feeding pigeons and squirrels. Neighbors said the food attracted rodents and other disease-carriers and posed a public health hazard.

Because this was not Molloy's first court appearance in the matter, he might have faced jail time. After losing in this latest legal confrontation, he said he plans to "leave things lie."

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