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Cedar's Viral Case Expanded to Add New Defendants and Legal Claims

Our lawsuit on behalf of a little girl and her goat Cedar went viral. As reported by the New York Times, Guardian, USA Today, and many more, we alleged Shasta County Sheriff’s Deputies violated the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution when they drove over 500 miles to seize Cedar and deliver him to slaughter.

Today, we amended Cedar's lawsuit to add additional defendants, including the Shasta District Fair and Event Center, the Sheriff's Department, the County of Shasta, and more. Expanded claims include intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, conversion, violations of the California Constitution, and viewpoint discrimination and retaliation under the First Amendment.

ICYMI: the young girl who owned Cedar exercised her legal right to withdraw Cedar from a youth livestock auction hosted by the Shasta District Fair and Event Center ("Fair"). These auctions can be traumatic for children who have bonded with their animals as pets. Although the young girl and her mother claimed to retain ownership over Cedar and offered to compensate the Fair for any loss in this purely civil dispute, the Fair threatened the minor’s mom with a felony charge of grand theft.

According to our original lawsuit, Shasta County Sheriff’s Deputies unreasonably searched for and unreasonably seized Cedar, without a warrant, despite notice of plaintiffs’ civil contract dispute and continued assertions of ownership of Cedar. Although Shasta County Sheriff’s Deputies were required by law to retain Cedar, they instead turned him over to unknown third parties for slaughter. The lawsuit alleges defendants improperly determined ownership of Cedar without judicial authorization and without affording plaintiffs any notice and opportunity for hearing, in violation of the U.S. Constitution and California state law.

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