Employees Saw ASPCA Vet John Morehead Kick Rottweiler Before It Died; Heartbroken Owner Files Suit

*Jan 07 - 00:05*

It’s a murder mystery with a double twist – the victim is a dog and the prime suspect is a former ASPCA hospital vet.The owner of a Rottweiler named Bullet is desperately trying to find out how his dog died three years ago and has filed suit in federal court.
Meanwhile, the Daily News has learned that veterinarian John Morehead was accused by three colleagues of kicking the sickly 10-year-old animal.

The revelation came as a shock to Rafael Lopez, who said ASPCA investigators exhumed Bullet’s body and performed a necropsy – but never came up with a cause of death.”He was my baby,” Lopez, 58, told The News. “I brought the dog there thinking they would save my dog. I killed him by taking him there.”Lopez had fed Bullet with a spoon since birth. When Bullet fell ill, he took him to the respected ASPCA Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital on Manhattan’s upper East Side.

*Jan 07 - 00:05*

After Bullet died, Lopez buried him in a white towel beneath a tree in Highbridge Park near his home in the Bronx.His first hint that the death might not have been natural came days later when ASPCA investigators showed up at his apartment demanding to know where Bullet was buried. They told him someone at the hospital “was killing dogs,” according to the suit filed last year in Manhattan Federal Court against the ASPCA and current and former officials.

The body was exhumed and taken to Cornell Veterinary School in upstate Ithaca for a necropsy. Lopez never got the remains back – or an explanation.”We always believed there was a coverup [by the ASPCA],” said Lopez’s lawyer George Dazzo.A source familiar with the investigation told The News that there were, in fact, allegations Bullet was abused at the hospital.

A colleague, Dr. Sarah Alward, told higherups that Morehead – who has since left the ASPCA – kicked the dog hard in the torso the day before he died, the source said. Two other hospital employees also told the ASPCA’s internal investigators they saw Morehead kick the dog, the source said. One said Morehead punched Bullet after the dog made a sudden movement toward him during an exam, the source said.

ASPCA investigators did not learn of the allegations from senior staff until three days after the alleged attack, the source said. And by the time Bullet was dug up, he was too decomposed to determine a cause of death – and Morehead refused to be questioned, said the source.

The ASPCA said it could not comment on the suit.Alward, who no longer works at the ASPCA, confirmed to The News that she saw Morehead kick the dog but declined further comment.A spokeswoman for the state Education Department’s division of professional licensing, which investigates alleged wrongdoing by vets, said there is no record of disciplinary action against Morehead.He now works at Animal Kind Veterinary Hospital in Park Slope, Brooklyn, where he touts his “love for furry creatures” on the facility’s Web site.

Contacted last week, Morehead was reluctant to discuss the allegations.”You may know more about this than I do,” he said in a brief interview. “I don’t think that I’ve ever mistreated an animal and I hope I never do,” he added, declining to comment on why he left the ASPCA.Lopez, who sobbed uncontrollably when told about the accusations against Morehead, said he’s aching for his day in court: “They are more [like] animals than the animals in there,” he said of the ASPCA.Depositions in the suit will be taken soon, and his lawyer may add Morehead as a defendant.

“I was never able to give Bullet a proper burial,” Lopez said, “but his spirit is in heaven.”

(source)

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. ruby
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:55:45

    Some one should kick him ( i mean really kick him) Why did he become a vet? and he should be punished just like any animal abuser….

    Reply

  2. sweety
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:56:18

    The owner of the dog should be granted the right to give this heartless **** a swift kick right in his crotch. Payback is a b****!!

    Reply

  3. kelly
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:57:01

    I feel so sorry for this man that his dog was murdered like that. I look at my little guy and am so grateful that he shares his life with me…

    Reply

  4. Nancy
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:58:03

    hey sweety………..im with ya! I have jack russell terrier and im so happy that she is with me. If this “vet” did that to her i would kick him in his stupid head and then kick out of his life. Poor guy and his dog – their pics make me cry… 😦

    Reply

  5. Rose
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:58:31

    That is a sad story.

    Reply

  6. delgadorox
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 02:59:29

    they should take away his license…..

    Reply

  7. HaIR girl
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 03:00:56

    alking about kicking a dog when it’s down. Wow. Let me tell you one thing if this happened to my dogs (Boxer and Goldern Retriever) my *** will have to be bailed out of jail. The vet would get his behind kicked by myself and spouse to the utmost. I donate to many animal organizations. The ASPCA will now be at the bottom of the list.

    Reply

  8. Nisreen
    Feb 03, 2010 @ 05:01:30

    Really sad…

    Reply

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