isnt it amazing the ways government goons can find to micromanage our lives and waste the tax dollars they steal from us.
Published January 18, 2006
Eastpointe squirrel lover agrees to feeding limits Associated Press
EASTPOINTE - A woman who has sparred for years with local officials over her insistence on feeding squirrels has agreed to limits on her activity.
Luminita Marinas pleaded no contest Monday in Eastpointe's 38th District Court to charges of littering and failing to use a proper feeding receptacle. She avoided a fine but received six months' probation.
Marinas agreed to give squirrels no more than 8 ounces of nuts once a day at each of four locations. She also must clean up any shells within 24 hours of putting them out.
If Marinas complies with the agreement, the case against her will be dropped, The Detroit News said.
A no-contest plea is not an admission of guilt but is treated as a conviction for sentencing purposes. The charge carried a possible penalty of 90 days in jail or a $500 fine.
"I'm OK with it," Marinas told Judge Norene Redmond during Monday's hearing.
Defense lawyer Karen Lemke told the judge that Marinas "fully intends to live up to the agreement."
"It's an agreement similar to the one the city and (Marinas) had before with a couple of minor changes," the city's lawyer, Richard Albright, told the judge.
Marinas, who operates a gift shop, first clashed with Eastpointe officials about four years ago for feeding squirrels.
In 2002, she and the city worked out a deal that required her to pay a $250 fine and receive probation.
The deal, which expired in 2003, restricted her to putting out a small pile of peanuts in designated areas for squirrels once a day.
The Monday hearing stemmed from a complaint lodged against Marinas by a woman who said the peanut shells caused a health and safety hazard, court records say.
Redmond suggested that Marinas pick four trees at each of her designated locations to feed the squirrels.
"That way, animal control knows it's you and you don't get blamed for anyone else's mess," the judge said.
After the hearing, Albright said he was happy with the deal.
"I think it accomplishes what the city was looking for," he said. "No one is saying she can't feed the squirrels. Now we can ensure that she cleans up after."
Tuesday, January 17, 2006 Print this Comment on this E-mail this Squirrel lover to curb handouts
Court says Eastpointe woman can put out an 8-ounce cup of nuts once a day at four locations.
Charles E. Ramirez / The Detroit News David Coates / The Detroit News
Attorney Karen Lemke, right, told the judge Monday that Luminita Marinas "fully intends to live up to the agreement." See full image
The squirrel deal
Luminita Marinas pleaded no contest to litter control Monday and agreed to some restrictions for feeding the bushy-tailed animals. Highlights of what she consented to in her plea agreement:
Six months of probation.
She can only feed squirrels in four locations, including two municipal parks: John F. Kennedy Park, at Stephens and Schroeder; Spindler Park, 19400 Stephens at Interstate 94; the median of Kelly Road in front of Marina's town house complex near 10 Mile; and behind her business, Lumination, which is on Nine Mile east of Kelly.
She can put out no more than 8 ounces of nuts for squirrels at each designated location.
She must clean up and remove any and all shells or other by-products from the nuts she set out for squirrels within 24 hours. Sources: City of Eastpointe and 38th District Court in Eastpointe
EASTPOINTE --Squirrels in Eastpointe won't have to go hungry this winter, after all.
But the woman who has become locally famous for keeping her bushy-tailed friends in nuts will have to follow some strict rules from now on, although she won't have to shell out any fine money.
Luminita Marinas pleaded no contest in a pretrial hearing Monday in 38th District Court in Eastpointe to charges of littering and failing to use a proper feeding receptacle.
She agreed to a set of specific rules for feeding the critters. She is on probation for six months.
Under the deal, Marinas is allowed to give squirrels an 8-ounce cup of nuts once a day at four locations.
In addition, she's required to clean up any shells or other by-products from the nuts she feeds to the animals within 24 hours of putting them out.
If Marinas complies with the agreement, the charge against her will be dropped.
The agreement ends the most recent skirmish between the city of Eastpointe and Marinas over her habit of setting out peanuts for squirrels in her neighborhood.
"It's an agreement similar to the one the city and (Marinas) had before with a couple of minor changes," attorney Richard Albright told Judge Norene Redmond during Monday's hearing. Albright represented the city in the case.
The move allowed Marinas to avoid a trial. It also allowed her to avoid a potential maximum sentence of either a $500 fine or 90 days in jail.
"I'm OK with it," she told Redmond on Monday.
Her attorney, Karen Lemke, also told the judge that Marinas "fully intends to live up to the agreement."
Marinas, who sells crystals, incense and angelic bric-a-brac at her gift shop on Nine Mile in Eastpointe, first ran afoul of city officials about four years ago for feeding squirrels.
In 2002, she and the city worked out a deal that required her to pay a $250 fine and probation. Under the arrangement, which expired in 2003, she also was restricted to putting out a small pile of peanuts in designated areas for squirrels only once a day.
The Monday hearing stemmed from a complaint lodged against Marinas in September by a Clinton Township woman.
The woman -- whose mother lives near the complex -- alleged in her complaint to Eastpointe police that the shells from the peanuts Marinas was putting in the public right of way near a driveway of her townhouse complex on Kelly Road near 10 Mile caused a health and safety hazard, according to court records.
She also said she was concerned for the safety of children who attend a middle school nearby.
Police officers later found 300 to 400 peanut shells on the ground between the sidewalk and the street just south of the southern driveway for Cavalier Manor, the townhouse complex where Marinas lives, according to court documents.
Marinas, who has never gone to trial for indulging squirrels, maintained that she didn't break any law and continued to abide by her 2002 agreement with the city. She also accused city officials of bullying her.
Officials denied the allegation.
Redmond accepted the plea agreement and suggested that Marinas pick four trees at each of her designated locations to feed her furry friends. "That way animal control knows it's you and you don't get blamed for anyone else's mess," she said.
After the hearing, Albright said he was pleased with the agreement.
"I'm happy with it, and I think it accomplishes what the city was looking for," he said. "No one is saying she can't feed the squirrels. Now we can ensure that she cleans up after."
Marinas had no comment, but gave The News a handwritten copy of two Bible passages and said that's all she was going to say about the case.
One of the passages was from Ephesians 6:10-18, which refers to "The Armor of God" -- how God protects those who believe in him against the Devil's wiles and "against the authorities and the powers of this dark world. "
The other was from Galatians 5:13-15, which calls on people to "Love your neighbor as yourself" and proclaims that "If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other."
You can reach Charles E. Ramirez at (586) 468-2905 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Woman agrees to limit squirrel feeding EASTPOINTE, Mich., Jan. 17 (UPI) -- A Michigan woman has agreed to limit her food donations to the local squirrel population.
Luminita Marinas of Eastpointe pleaded no contest Monday to charges of littering and failing to use a proper feeder, the Detroit News reported. Her plea agreement includes the provision that she can put out no more than eight ounces of feed per day at each of four locations.
Marinas wound up in court after a woman whose mother lives near her said that her habit of putting out large quantities of peanuts led to hundreds of shells scattered on the street and sidewalk. She faced a similar complaint four years ago.
Judge Norene Redmond suggested that Marinas pick four trees as her feeding sites and let local police and animal control officers know which ones they are.
"That way animal control knows it's you, and you don't get blamed for anyone else's mess," she told Marinas.