Lancaster pet abuse defense attorney poised to win county judgeship

Lancaster County is home to the largest concentration of commercial dog breeding kennels in the state.

Now an attorney whose firm has specialized in defending them - and other individuals charged with animal cruelty - is on the fast-track to becoming a county judge.

Leonard Brown, a partner in the firm of Clymer, Musser, Brown & Conrad, won the endorsement of the Lancaster County Republican Party on Tuesday. There is no announced Democratic candidate, so Brown could be unopposed in November, according to the Lancaster Intelligencer Journal.

Voters in Lancaster County may ask: Can Brown be an impartial jurist in cases involving animal welfare?

If there was a specialty practice area for defending those involved in animal abuse cases and pursing federal civil suits against those who defend animal rights, Brown's firm is it.

They represented the Pennsylvania Professional Dog Breeders Association in their failed effort to overturn the 2008 dog law. They are currently representing a group of breeders suing the Pennsylvania SPCA and Main Line Animal Rescue which bought sick dogs at an Ohio auction and unsuccessfully sought criminal charges against the breeders.

Brown's partner, Jeff Conrad, has represented several dog breeders with a history of criminal conduct, including Chester County puppy mill operator John Blank, who plead guilty to animal cruelty and then filed a suit against the Pennsylvania SPCA and Main Line Animal Rescue claiming his constitutional rights were violated when his kennel was raided in July 2008. It was dismissed by a federal judge last October. Conrad also is counsel for a couple in Franklin County, west of Harrisburg, appealing their second conviction on animal cruelty charges. (More on that case here.)