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« Brain food from the heartland


By lbfgm (Contact)

Published January 15, 2012

Untitled document



Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable... Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Last Wednesday (11 January 2012) many people from this area , 'round this state and elsewhere were hoping for some justice. Unfortunately, justice wasn't on the menu in Judge Bob Douglas' court - again.

We learned this from 20 December's Vindicator:


The former owner of a Youngstown kennel, convicted of two counts of animal cruelty, was arraigned today for violating the terms of his probation.

Steven S. Croley was charged with probation violation for having three dogs at his Austintown home. He was released on his own recognizance.

Croley was picked up about 10:50 p.m. Monday by Austintown police on the warrant, issued by Youngstown police after it was determined he owned dogs. Croley was held overnight in the Mahoning County jail pending his morning arraignment.

Nineteen dogs were found starving, including eight who died, at Croley’s High Caliber K-9 kennel in Youngstown in 2008. As part of his probation, he isn’t permitted to own dogs.

I'd been told that many folks had contacted The Youngstown Probation dept regarding Croley's harbouring dogs since May of 2011. People were so frustrated with the lack of interest by Croley's probation officer and the lack of response by the probation department, that they contacted Judge Douglas' office directly. 

I'm concerned that there were SO VERY many calls to Steve Croley's probation officer yet NOTHING was investigated--NOTHING done. That should concern MORE than  just those who speak for those who cannot speak for themselves...those, such as folks who have aligned themselves with The Nitro Foundation . We should ALL wonder if other cases handled by Steve Croley's probation officer and the Youngstown Probation Department have found their way to some gaping abyss - NEVER being followed up on...

I am surprised, with all of the calls made to Judge Douglas, ALL of the information that was sent to HIS office after NO response from the Youngstown Probation Department, that NOTHING has come from Judge Douglas - NO call for ANY investigation into the FAILURE of Steve Croley's p.o.(probation officer) to follow up on ANYTHING regarding THIS case. One would think that Bob Douglas would be concerned that this may be the 'tip of the iceberg', an indication that there's some dysfunction with this probation officer and/or possibly the entire Youngstown Probation department! 

Unfortunately Judge Douglas' silence doesn't surprise me. His voice has never been one that this community can depend on for, well, anything. Listeners to the show are well aware of Judge Douglas' silence, his seeming lack of interest with the Mahoning County Criminal Justice Working  Group which was formed after US Federal Judge David Dowd learned that we had a dysfunctional criminal justice system . Oh yes, Douglas showed up for some of the meetings, but did little more than look down at his shoes while in attendance.


THIS community needs judges that care about REAL justice and have the courage to call for an investigation when they're made aware of dysfunction. I realize that Bob Douglas is near the end of his career as Municipal judge. One would hope that Bob would want to end on a high note, a positive note. By ignoring dysfunction, Judge Douglas becomes part of the problem .


The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. 
-Martin Luther King, Jr.



1ohioanimallover(18 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Well put Louie! We counted 65 people at the rally from all over Ohio, and a few from PA! We won't give up.. :)

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2cfflick67(5 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Very disappointed in our legal system and Judge Douglas. His rationale is illogical and suspect!

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3ohioanimallover(18 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Also-- I REFUSE to call him HONORABLE. He is a coward.

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4mollylm(16 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Thanks for writing this, I agree with everything you've said here. It is truly appalling that the "justice" system bent over backwards to allow Croley to circumvent what little "punishment" he got to begin with and live with his dogs again. All he had to do all along was round up a woman to hide behind and it was all null and void? My sincere advice to Judge Douglas is that he find some time to volunteer in a shelter when he finally retires, Perhaps then he will understand that these aren't "just dogs" and why this matters.

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5AOSPCA(14 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Sitting in the courtroom, with a briefcase full of evidence.... evidence both the judge and probation officer knew would be present, as well as witnesses... yet, we were as voiceless as the victims of Steve Croley and others like him. We specifically asked the judge to be heard (in writing), a request that was simply ignored.

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