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By Ian Markham-Smith - Posted on 19 August 2009

An Irishman shot dead in Northern California was at the centre of an animal cruelty row with local prosecutors at the time of his death.
Sheriff's deputies have charged the neighbour of horse owner John O'Sullivan, originally from Valentia island in Co. Kerry, with murder.
O'Sullivan, who was gunned down on Sunday in Fiddletown, about 72 kilometres/42 miles from Sacramento, the state capital, had a long-running dispute with Kenneth John Zimmerman and the pair had been feuding on the night of his death.
But O'Sullivan, who had lived in the United States for 20 years, was a highly controversial and disliked character in his adopted hometown in the Sierra Nevada foothills.
Sheriff's deputies discovered the Irishman's bullet-riddled body sitting on his tractor in the brush near Zimmerman's home.
Earlier that evening 56-year-old Zimmerman had telephoned police at aroun 7.45 alleging O'Sullivan had driven a tractor though his locked gate and accusing him of striking him in the face with his open hand during an altercation and trying to run him over with the tractor.
Zimmerman, who is being held in custody without bail, told the emergency dispatcher that the Amador County Sheriff’s officers had better hurry up and get there “before I shoot him.”
About 15 minutes after Zimmerman's call, O'Sullivan's wife also telephoned the emergency 911 number to report that she heard several gunshots and could not find her husband.
But Zimmerman wasn't the only one gunning for 47-year-old O'Sullivan.
At the time of his death, O'Sullivan was battling with local prosecutors, who he alleged had maliciously prosecuted him in a long-running horse maltreatment case which led to him being convicted of animal cruelty.
And local animal activists were also trying to prevent O'Sullivan from owning horses.
Prosecutors have been trying to get a malicious-prosecution case O'Sullivan had brought against them dismissed.
The Irishman's lawsuit alleged various rights violations by Amador County in its 2007 prosecution of him.
O'Sullivan, who is a member of a long established native Valentia Island family and was the eldest of a family of eight, some of whom still live on Valentia and in the Tralee area, was seeing unspecified money damages.
A Sacramento federal magistrate in June heard and took under consideration arguments from the lawsuit's co-plaintiff Krista Clem - who is married to O'Sullivan - and from private counsel John Whitesides representing Todd Riebe, an Amador district lawyer.
O'Sullivan's troubles with officials stretch back to January 2006 when three of his allegedly malnurished horses were handed over to animal welfare activist Beth DeCaprio and a team of volunteers.
DeCaprio, the president of the Grace Foundation, a charity that rehabilitates abused horses, said around the time of O'Sullivan's trial that it was a miracle she had got hold of them because otherwise they would have died within a few weeks.
DeCaprio and her team spent a year nursing the horses, that were little more than skin and bones, back to health, watching each of them put on 400 pounds within the first three months.
"These were animals we'd taken from the brink of death and brought back to life," she said.
DeCaprio launched a successful letter-writing campaign to ensure that O'Sullivan, who was convicted of two charges of animal cruelty, was never handed back the animals he had abused.
O'Sullivan was prosecuted and had animals taken away from him after a neighbour – believed to be Zimmerman – had complained to officials from Amador County Animal Control of emaciated horses on O'Sullivan's ranch.
Animal Control Director John Vail said that when inspectors got to the ranch they found "one dead horse and five others in very poor condition."
The horses were seized and O'Sullivan was charged with cruelty to animals.
Three of the horses made their way to the Grace Foundation's 600-acre ranch near El Dorado Hills, which is home to about 100 other rescued horses. Two were sent to an undisclosed location, Vail said.
The family of O'Sullivan, who emigrated to the US in the early 1980s, were the owners of the Royal Hotel in Knightstown until they sold it a few years back.
Before leaving Ireland, O'Sullivan worked in the building trade and played Gaelic football with Valentia Island and was regarded as a fine footballer.

DATE: 7/1/11
TO: WestWords and Ian MarkhamSmith
FROM: Krista Clem-O'Sullivan

Now that John's murderer has been convicted and sentenced to 40 years to life, and I have given the matter over to the attorneys for a civil trial, I insist that you remove your libelous article describing John as a "convicted horse abuser" immediately. You apparently obtained this information from the Amador Ledger Dispatch, who has since printed a retraction, but you have not, and your libelous article appears 1st when a search is performed. This is a legal demand for an immediate retraction. A copy of the DISMISSAL documents of the charges against John can easily be obtained from the Amador County Superior Court.

Thank you.

Krista Clem-O'Sullivan
cc: Legal Counsel

At the same time O'Sullivan was murdered, my wife and I had a neighbor who was threatening to murder us. We had a restraining order but the same defendants you were suing ignored our restraining order. We had a dog and they tried to use the pound to arrest us for have a dog on a run, but the idiot didn't know that dog runs under a new law are humane, as we do not have a fence. My dog has a custom dog house with a door, and was in excellent health, and the pound had to leave. But they tried other things too, for complaining. We had Magistrate Brennan also. What he did was take our complaint and rewrite it in words that we did not state. Like counterfeiting our complaint so it would fail. Within days of your husbands murder, we asked Brennan to give us a protection order on the basis of 4 other restraining orders that existed between the defendant that was threatening to murder us. We caught him shooting my new pickup truck and he was arrested. Vern Pierson released him and would lift no finger to help us by enforcing an order to protect us from the local court based on witnesses and evidence, even though the Defendant Dave Randall was suffering from mental illness and armed with weapons he used to assault almost a dozen vicitms.

We thought that Brennan would give us a protection order becasue we had videos showing this guy threatening to murder our employees and my wife and myself and one attempt at running me over.

Magistrate Brennan clears his court dockets of plaintiffs who accuse his comrad fellow officials of malfeasance by allowing people to murder them. It sounds absurd to say that, but what other reason is there? I have no clue!

Macias v. Ihde is a case that explains who officials use these heated circumstances and simply orchestrate murder and stalking that leads to murder by "arbitrary inaction."
1. Macias v. Ihde, 219 F.3d 1018, 1028-29 (9th Cir. 2000):
The Appellants contend that the district court "fundamentally misconstrued" the constitutional deprivation at issue in this case. They maintain that the alleged constitutional deprivation occurred when the defendants failed to provide Mrs. Macias with equal police protection in the months leading up to her death. Their brief states: 35

The district court erred in determining that there was insufficient evidence of actual causation in part, by misconstruing [the Appellants'] constitutional injury as `murder' rather than `lack of equal protection.' By so doing, the court ignored the evidence that [the Appellees'] arbitrary failure to enforce the law caused [Mrs. Macias] to suffer not only her murder on April 15, 1996, but the three months of harassment, stalking, and death threats that proceeded it.

I was shocked when he denied our request and your husband was murdered by your neighbor, yet he would allow our neighbor to murder us if we so desired. We had to move from our home, but still pay the mortgage, and we still do, but have to live somewhere else, this has destroyed our retirement goals, but Brennan and Pierson are scum bag politicians influencing murders similar to the Macias Case, and getting away with committing the perfect murders that silence civil right activists or those who are trying to get the courts to look at evidence. Our evidence was indisputable, but Brennan hid it from the district court judges and their side of the record. Senator Dave Cox gave us the evidence showing the conspiracy, when they tried to enlist him in it.

Anyway, don't let what happened to you fade, unless it is to hard to bare the burden! I think we got these criminals, but we got to get some law enforcement who is not corrupt to act. That is the problem!

Any suggestions?