Name of Annie’s new owner released by mistake

August 24, 2010

Photo by Amy Joseph

The San Luis Obispo County Counsel’s office accidentally released the name Tuesday of the woman who recently adopted Annie, the dog who continues to be at the center of a highly-charged custody battle.

Kitty Crockett of Atascadero filed a request with county officials under the California Public Records Act to learn the name of the people who adopted the Australian shepherd from county animal services in July. The original owner, Chuck Hoage, has been trying to get the dog back since she went missing in June.

The people who currently have Annie are said to be on vacation through September 1. County supervisor Adam Hill has said repeatedly he plans to meet with the family upon their return in hopes of returning the dog to Hoage.

Crockett obtained the 15-page document from the County Counsel’s office Tuesday during a noontime rally on Hoage’s behalf outside the county government center. Copies of the document were made available to several people at the rally, including Hoage and KVEC talk show host Dave Congalton.

Under terms of the Public Records Act, specific names and other information can be redacted at the discretion of county officials. The document in question has several black lines through it, but sources tell CalCoastNews that the last page clearly lists the woman’s name, home address, and phone number. Her name is also listed elsewhere in the document.

The document was apparently vetted by Assistant County Counsel Rita Neal, who signed the cover letter to the Crocketts that accompanied the release.

On his radio show Tuesday night, Congalton told his listeners that “the county had inadvertently released  the information” without going into details. Congalton declined further comment later when contacted by CalCoastNews other than to say he had “no intention of going public with the information.”







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  1. Cindy says:

    I can’t believe the Tribune told everyone that Congalton, Crockett and Hoage are the people who know the name of Annie’s dog captor. Talk about trying to apply intimidation. Why don’t they mention every shelter volunteer who knows, every AGPD who knows and every county official who knows and ask them all if they have talked to anyone (wives, husbands, friends) ? Why don’t they ask the captor who knows they ( the captors) have Annie and confirm if any friends, neighbors and disgruntled relatives might know? When the NAME gets out the TT have now gave the public the impression that it will be because of one of the 3 people they named. What JERKS.

    (6) 22 Total Votes - 14 up - 8 down
    • victoria says:

      Worried about public backlash towards Congalton, Crockett and Hoage? That would totally be wrong and suck. Just like it’s totally wrong and sucks that a whole bunch of people are whipped up about the new owners. Not so nice when the shoe is on the other foot. Hope nobody decides to picket Crockett’s house for what lead up to the leak of personal info. Big ol f-in mess.

      (2) 14 Total Votes - 8 up - 6 down
      • SLORider says:

        Wrong, victoria! Cindy laid out the real likelihood of an unfounded backlash towards Congalton, Crocket and Hoage because there are many, many others who also know the name. The Trib set that up by their inaccurate reporting. The backlash against Annie’s captors is not unfounded because they are the only ones impounding Chuck’s dog.

        (-9) 9 Total Votes - 0 up - 9 down
        • victoria says:

          If something happened to the new owner because of the release of info due to the petition being filed in the first place I am sure that backlash would be as founded if not more than what you feel the new owner deserves to a lot of people. That is all subjective.

          This article gives the exact same names and was put out on the internet first. Why aren’t you mad at CalCoast News too? Maybe because this website doesn’t get the same kind of exposure that The Trib does? I don’t understand what the difference is at all.

          And if everybody is so mad because The Trib “leaked” the Arroyo Grande info, I read members of “team recapture Annie” posting things like; word is the “captor” lives in AG keep an eye out for her, probably over a week ago (One person went so far as to say they saw her at Arroyo Grande Bakery with a little girl but then…OOPS! Later said she didn’t know Annie had a puppy cut so it couldn’t have been her. How many false Annie sightings is that now?).

          So are you guys just mad because now you have to be really careful how you use information you already had, probably through a shady set of circumstances? Dang I hate when that happens, too (oh, SLORider that part was sarcasm just to be clear. I think even college graduates use sarcasm on occasion).

          (2) 4 Total Votes - 3 up - 1 down
          • victoria says:

            BTW, not only did CalCoast News break this story first but it orginally listed Kitty Crockett and the name of what I am assuming is her husband in the article. I remember this for fairly obvious reasons.

            In re-reading this very article (that this thread is on) it says:
            “The document was apparently vetted by Assistant County Counsel Rita Neal, who signed the cover letter to the Crocketts that accompanied the release.”

            Crocketts being plural in that quote.

            So CalCoast originally released more names than The Trib, and then edited out a name AFTER the fact.

            (1) 3 Total Votes - 2 up - 1 down
  2. JordanJ says:

    I’ve heard that Annie was placed in a kennel while the adopters left town. As soon as I can positively identify them I am going to tell everybody who they are. Talk about rotten people. The county counsel has no right to tell anybody that they can’t release the name of the selfish dog captors.

    (2) 24 Total Votes - 13 up - 11 down
    • victoria says:

      Do you believe everything you hear? What are you 5? “I am going to tell everybody”. Good for you. Good luck with that and that will make you a better person than them.

      (2) 12 Total Votes - 7 up - 5 down
      • SLORider says:

        Academic retorts such as, “What are you 5?” certainly make you a better person?

        (-8) 8 Total Votes - 0 up - 8 down
  3. The Truth Will Prevail says:

    These people ranting and raving about something that they don’t know the facts about should not post. I am sick and tired of people villianizing Chuck Hoage, he just wants his damn dog back! He is the nicest man you could ever meet, and he should get his dog back. I really don’t think that the county council could be so dumb as to release the adoptors identity, I just think that it is a distraction away from who really screwed up, Animal Services and their manager. The county would really like this story to go away, and is isn’t until Chuck gets Annie back. We have not heard yet what really happened to Annie. Also the story told that the people are out of town I believe is a stall by the County, because they don’t know what to do. If this was a legitimate story told to us, Annie would have already been returned to her rightful owner Chuck. I smell a rat, a big RAT!!

    (17) 29 Total Votes - 23 up - 6 down
    • BeFair says:

      The only solution is to cut Annie in half through the belly. Give the half with the snout to Chuck, and the half with the ass to the woman who stole her. That way, at least no one will be happy, which is more fair than letting the thief keep her in one piece!

      (-12) 20 Total Votes - 4 up - 16 down
  4. rogerfreberg says:

    Hmmmm… dogs who live with a long term human companion don’t run away from good owners… Ladies, they don’t behave like cats.

    As for Mssr. Hoag, he is beyond contempt making this public. Time for him to man-up.

    As for the women in the picture in today’s paper… two words: “Jenny Craig.”

    Roger Freberg

    (-45) 65 Total Votes - 10 up - 55 down
    • SLORider says:

      Roger, Now how are you possibly qualified to make such statements? I suppose you had a donut with Annie this morning or study dog whispering? I can certainly respect opposing opinions, but your statements are spiteful and absurd.

      (25) 31 Total Votes - 28 up - 3 down
    • brettmx says:

      Nice Roger. I’d suggest you not throw to many of those stones in your glass house. Despite your weight loss you’re not the most “fit” looking man yourself.

      (23) 25 Total Votes - 24 up - 1 down
    • ThomasPaine says:

      Unbelievable comment Freberg. But after perusing your web site it all makes sense. There are probably some legitimate criticisms to be made, your comments, not so much.

      (18) 20 Total Votes - 19 up - 1 down
    • Dave says:

      We expect better of you, Roger.

      (9) 15 Total Votes - 12 up - 3 down
    • gillian says:

      Roger Freberg – Dogs who are well-cared for and loved often run away when they are spooked by something. Fireworks, lightning/ thunder, and gunshots or, indeed, any loud noise can make a dog run. In this case, it was a gunshot that frightened Annie. And what do cats have to do with anything?

      Personal comments about people don’t advance the discussion at all.

      Furthermore, you have never shied away from making things public.

      On another subject, I sincerely hope that no one reveals the name of Annie’s current owner. This person should be allowed to do the right thing and return Annie because it is the right thing to do and not because of intimidation.

      (7) 11 Total Votes - 9 up - 2 down
    • danika says:

      Hey Roger? At least overweight people can diet…ineptitude is much, much harder to shed and often goes clear to the bone. I’m sure your diagnosis of having this came as no surpise to you.

      Annie didn’t run from good owner, Chuck…she was running from the sudden, unexpected noise.

      Beyond contempt is your Jenny Craig comment.

      (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down
  5. ThomasPaine says:

    Dave has done nothing wrong here and we should all be so fortunate if we had his backing should a similar situation arise with any of us. He has done much good here.

    Some of the more fanatical posters may be wound a little tight but as far as Dave goes he has done a good thing. What were the alternatives?

    Keep up the good work Dave and I hope people remain calm and see what takes place in the near future.

    (16) 32 Total Votes - 24 up - 8 down
  6. taxpayer says:

    Cindy……”generally” you may or may not be right. History tells us that Hitler was a dog lover but he was bad to people. There are bad people in this world who love dogs and don’t like people. Of course, there are lots of people who like both. There’s really no correlation that I’ve seen proven. My point is merely that everyone needs to take a deep breath and let things calm down a bit.

    (7) 19 Total Votes - 13 up - 6 down
    • Cindy says:

      OK taxpayer, I’ll buy the part about people who like animals aren’t necessarily benevolent towards mankind. Animals are often needy little beings that need help. I can’t say that I would help an animal faster than i would help a human but I do help animals more often because they aren’t lazy users. When you give an animal a chance they take it and make the most of it.

      (-7) 15 Total Votes - 4 up - 11 down
    • Moderator says:

      A couple of comments removed, ??? email

      (0) 2 Total Votes - 1 up - 1 down
  7. taxpayer says:

    Anyone who believes that people who love animals can’t be harmful to other people doesn’t know much about people. There have been many people who did bad things to other people but were nice to their dogs. I just wonder how many people will give up on adopting animals because of all the publicity this has gotten. Animal Services might have the figures on that.

    (6) 14 Total Votes - 10 up - 4 down
    • Cindy says:

      People who love animals are generally good people. Check with the FBI profilers, one of the first indications of a “would be” psychopathic killer is animal abuse. We are all warned that animal abuse is a WARNING sign of a “bad person” in the making.

      (-5) 17 Total Votes - 6 up - 11 down
  8. taxpayer says:

    Anyone who believes that people who loves animals can’t be harmful to other people doesn’t know much about people. There have been many people who did bad things to other people but were nice to their dogs. I just wonder how many people will give up on adopting animals because of all the publicity this has gotten. Animal Services might have the figures on that.

    (2) 4 Total Votes - 3 up - 1 down
  9. ThomasPaine says:

    Didn’t you report that you knew the names of the people who adopted Annie 2 weeks ago?

    Annie should be returned but through the actions of serious people, not fanatics.

    (12) 26 Total Votes - 19 up - 7 down
    • storox76 says:

      This is crazy. Has anyone considered, that if Mr. Hoage had obeyed leash laws that the dog would still be with him. He is lucky that the dog was adopted rather than hit by a car. Government officials have no business involved in this other than the Dog Shelter to tell Mr. Hoage that they are sorry, but the dog has been adopted. Our tax dollars are being wasted by the County Attorney, the County Supervisor and who knows who else involved. I may even feel differently if Mr. Hoage were a terminally ill person, but, he looks healthy to me. I am guessing the new owners have kids who have become attached to the dog. Why expect them to suffer when a grown man refuses to accept that he lost his dog becasue he did not use a leash. I’m not buying the gunshot BS either.

      (-27) 53 Total Votes - 13 up - 40 down
      • slorealitycheck says:

        First off storox76, This is a ranch dog. Ask any rancher about their dog and almost 100% of the time they will tell you their dog is not on a leash, especially if it is a working dog. That is what Australian Shepards were bread for. I am an adamant leash law person, but you just don’t leash a working ranch dog.

        (23) 35 Total Votes - 29 up - 6 down