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The complaint seeks more than $750,000 in punitive damages, attorneys fees, interest and other damages.
Attorneys for the plaintiffs, Tiffany Lobeck and Vaughn McKenney of Springfield, didn’t return a call seeking comment Friday.
The lawsuit alleges all pets boarded at the King Kennel were billed for a Capstar treatment to ensure a flea infestation didn’t occur. Lobeck and McKenney allege in court records that the kennel never ordered Capstar from a distributor and didn’t have the treatment available on site.
The complaint also asked that the case be allowed to proceed as a class action lawsuit. It also alleged the clinic and kennel billed for other services that weren’t provided.
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“Despite defendants’ representations to plaintiffs and other similarly situated individuals of the class that all incoming animals must receive the Capstar flea treatment and, thus be billed for the treatment, Defendants never administered the Capstar treatment to the animals,” the lawsuit says. “Rather defendants merely billed for the treatment without providing the Capstar drug or any related flea infestation treatment to the animals.”
Richard Mayhall, King’s attorney, questioned the timing of the complaint.
The veterinarian's office was the alleged victim in a separate criminal case in which a former employee has been accused of stealing more than $150,000 from the kennel over several years. That case was scheduled to move forward this week, but Mayhall said prosecutors delayed it shortly after Lobeck and McKenney's case was filed.
“Everybody should draw their own conclusions,” Mayhall said. “Is it a valid lawsuit or is it an attempt to smear the Kings and delay the criminal trial?”