William Lamberth

William G. Lamberth II is currently an Assistant District Attorney for Sumner County, Tennessee. He received his Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 2001. He obtained his Juris Doctor in 2004 from the oldest law school in the country, Marshall Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary. William serves on the Board of Directors for the Sumner Antidrug Coalition, Gallatin Rotary Club and is Chairman of the Portland Community Education Foundation. He also serves as Secretary for the Rotary Club and recently served as President of the Sumner County Bar Association.

In 2006, William, helped secure a positive outcome for hundreds of rescued dogs from a puppy mill near Nashville, Tennessee. Thanks to his compassion and hard work the case was over in just four business days. The Sumner County Sheriff’s Department charged the puppy mill owner, Irene Meuser, with six counts of animal cruelty. She pleaded guilty to four of the charges; the additional two counts were dropped, in a plea deal by which Meuser agreed to a lifetime ban on breeding cats and dogs for sale. The court ordered her to pay the nearly $800 in fines and court costs and placed her on a two-year probation, during which random searches can be made of Meuser’s property, and any violations of the probation terms can result in jail time and additional fines. Meuser will never be able to operate another puppy mill – a condition that may not have been possible without this settlement.

In addition to his tough work prosecuting animal cruelty cases, William also helped pass security bond legislation in Tennessee that requires hoarders to post a bond to cover the costs of animal care from the time animals are seized until after trial. The bond has changed the way Tennessee handles animal cruelty cases involving large numbers of animals and given law enforcement a very efficient tool to assist in combating animal cruelty. In the Meuser case, William had to move as quickly as possible in order to protect the animals involved from additional suffering during a lengthy legal process. They also had to be sure not to bankrupt Sumner County while caring for almost 300 animals for a extended time period. But thanks to William’s hard work, along with the Animal Legal Defense Fund, State Senator Diane Black and State Representative Debra Maggart, that is no longer a consideration they have to address. Now a security bond request is filed with the court in nearly every case and within a few weeks the offender is either paying for the care of the animals or the animals are forfeited to the county. They are then adopted out as soon as possible. A rapid transition from abusive conditions to a caring adoptive family is no longer the exception in Tennessee, but the rule.

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