Vegas Bird Death May Bar Young Man From Practicing LawBy: Zach Walton - May 12, 2014
A bird death in Las Vegas back in 2012 had a lot of people up in arms over animal cruelty. Now the main individual responsible has finally been sentenced.
Justin Alexander Teixeira, a 25-year-old Berkeley law student, was sentenced to up to four years of probation and community service at an animal shelter for killing an exotic helmeted guineafowl in 2012. According to the report, Teixeira and two others were chasing the guineafowl in a wildlife area of Las Vegas when he grabbed the bird and tore its head off. It was said that he intoxicated at the time.
At his sentencing, Teixeira was reportedly sorry for what he had done. He referred to the incident as the “worst moment of [his] life” and that “if there was anything [he] could do to undo it, [he] would.” Despite his remorse, the judge wasn’t going to let him reduce his sentence even further that it already had been. He pleaded guilty to one felony charge of killing another person’s animal in May 2013 to avoid jail time. He also completed a 190-day prison boot camp sentence. While he has avoided the jail time, the judge said that he will have to do community service at an animal shelter for the duration of his probation.
While Teixeira got off relatively easy, his future may still be in jeopardy. While he was at the prison boot camp, he had also passed the California bar exam. To be a lawyer in the state, one must only have a misdemeanor on their record. With a felony, it would be impossible to practice law. If he complete his probation without any problems, he could ask for his felony to be reduced to a misdemeanor. Doing so would allow him to practice law, but it remains to be seen if the judge will be so lenient.
As for the other two men who were with Teixeira on the night of the bird’s death, they both pleaded guilty last year to misdemeanor charges. They were fined and had to complete some community service.[h/t: Reuters] Image via Fox 5 KVVU-TV