Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Meanwhile...out near the airport

Cordy still trying to get rid of one tiger
By Brandon Stahl, Fergus Falls Daily Journal

A tiger was granted a stay of execution thanks indirectly to a court ruling Monday.

When he agreed to a plea deal last November, Dr. Roy Alexander Cordy agreed that he would no longer be able to possess any exotic animals and would make all reasonable efforts to transfer those in his possession.

But after a tiger was spotted on his property in rural Pelican Rapids, the Otter Tail County Attorney's office charged him with violating his probation. Because he didn't find a home for the tiger, prosecutor Cherie Clark argued, the 90 days of jail time hanging over Cordy's head as part of the plea bargain should be executed.

But if that happened, Cordy testified on Tuesday, instead of going to jail, "I would have to euthanize the cat."

Cordy, 43, pleaded guilty last year to depriving an animal on his farm of necessary food, water and shelter. He testified that six to eight months before the plea agreement, he was able to find new homes for nearly all of his exotic animals, including a leopard, two camels, a tortoise and a llama.

But he said he has been unsuccessful in finding a home for a Bengal tiger, despite having contacted more than six shelters.

"Minnesota and federal regulations make it difficult to transfer a tiger," said Cordy's attorney, Dave Phillipe. "A cat of this nature is hard to place. You can't just take it to the pond and drop it off."

Judge Waldemar Senyk said that it appeared Cordy was making progress, after he testified that he may have found a home for the tiger in Kellier, Mo.

"I really want to go her out of there," said Cordy, who also testified that he visits the tiger daily when he's in the area, otherwise he has someone else feed and water the tiger.

Cordy said he would be able to transfer the tiger in 30 to 60 days.

He said he did not want to consider euthanization because he had "some emotional attachment to the animal."

"I wanted to give her every opportunity to find a home for her that was safe," he said.

After the hearing, Cordy declined comment.

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