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More News on the TWHBEA Investigation



 

    

As reported last week, the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association Enforcement Committee has launched an investigation of Sand Creek Sales to determine if they have violated the bylaws, corporate rules or copyrights of the TWHBEA.

The investigation is to determine if Sand Creek used confidential horse registry information compiled and owned by the TWHBEA for commercial purposes, specifically from the Lineage Software or iPEDS database. Attorney Walter Bussart of Lewisburg, Tenn., has been hired as a special investigator in the matter.

Chairman Doss scheduled a meeting at the Bussart Law Firm in Lewisburg on July 26 and instructed Sand Creek Sales owner Bob Kilgore and three of his employees--Kenny Lawrence, Brian Kilgore and Kim Wilson--to appear.

The Report contacted Kilgore and requested a copy of the letter from the Enforcement Committee. He felt it was not appropriate to release it and made the following statement. "The staff at Sand Creek Sales would never knowingly violate any of the rules and regulations of the Breeders Association, and I think this matter could have been handled by a simple phone call. We intend to cooperate fully with the investigation and get to the bottom of any possible misunderstandings."

TWHBEA Executive Director Charles Hulsey was out of the country and unavailable. TWHBEA President Jerrold Pedigo was also asked for a copy of the letter, but while he was aware of the investigation and letter, he had not actually seen it.

The Walking Horse Report later obtained a copy of the letter from confidential sources.

The letter is dated July 8 but was reportedly not received until July 17 according to Sand Creek officials. The letter is signed by Jack Doss, enforcement committee chairman, and is on the letterhead of the Bussart Law Firm, not the TWHBEA.

At the regular monthly meeting of the TWHBEA held Monday, July 26, the issue of the investigation of Sand Creek Sales was discussed. After the meeting, the Walking Horse Report asked TWHBEA President Jerrold Pedigo if the TWHBEA had any comment or clarification to make on the investigation and he said not at the present time.

Also, after the Executive Committee meeting, several members of the Enforcement Committee went to attorney Walter Bussart¹s office in Lewisburg for the scheduled 1:30 investigative meeting. Sand Creek had informed the committee that they would be unable to appear due to a conflict and asked the committee to work with them to schedule a meeting to get this matter resolved.

Whether the committee went ahead with their meeting and any results of the meeting ­ formally or informally ­ has not been released by the TWHBEA. The Report knows that no one from Sand Creek attended.

The Report contacted TWHBEA President Jerrold Pedigo again Tuesday, July 27, and he said that there was nothing new to report but that much of the information being posted on an industry internet site was wrong. He said the TWHBEA hoped to have something to release soon.

While The Report is frustrated and disappointed that the TWHBEA has not clarified the issues involved in this investigation, it is only fair to note that Enforcement Committee Chairman Jack Doss’ father passed away and he was unable to attend the meetings; Executive Director Charles Hulsey has just returned from a trip to Germany and President Jerrold Pedigo’s father is undergoing serious surgery. 

The Report will continue to update this story as additional information becomes available both online at www.walkinghorsereport.com and in print.


Dear Mr. Lawrence:

I am the chairman of the Enforcement Committee of the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association (TWHBEA). As such, I have been furnished certain letters by members of TWHBEA which were sent from you and/or your business organization soliciting our members. The Enforcement Committee has acted to initiate an investigation of your activities to determine whether violations of the Bylaws, corporate rules, or copyrights of TWHBEA have occurred.

Specifically, the confidential horse registry information compiled and owned by TWHBEA has been used by you and your organization for commercial purposes. This information includes Lineage Horse Information contained in the copyrighted records of TWHBEA, including registration numbers, foal dates, sire, dam, markings and horse owner information.

As a member of TWHBEA, or a non-member using the privileges thereof, you are obligated to abide by the rules (Article VIII, Article X, Article II). Rule 19 of the Corporation Rules which provides as follows:


Rule 19: COPYRIGHT STATEMENT
The certificate of registration is intended for the private use of the owner of the named horse and the content thereof may not be copied or otherwise reproduced without the express written consent of the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association.

This information may also have been obtained through Lineage Software which is produced by TWHBEA or iPEDs database. Upon installing and using the information, you agreed that the system and database were confidential horse registry information compiled and owned by TWHBEA as follows:


By Registering as a user of Lineage Software, and by accessing the Lineage Software database, you agree to the following:

1. The Lineage Software system and database includes confidential horse registry information compiled and owned by the TWHBEA. Use of information in the database is restricted to registered users for person, noncommercial purposes only.

2. The Lineage Software database, compilation of registry data and other Lineage software content, are each protected by U.S. copyrights for non-commercial, personal use only. No information or material from the Lineage Software system may be reproduced or distributed for any commercial purpose. Copyright TWHBEA 1997-2003. All Rights Reserved.

3. Use of the Lineage Software system and registry data is also subject to the Rules and Regulations of the TWHBEA.

Consequently the use of this information is restricted to personal, noncommercial use only. You have also violated that agreement by your conduct.

We have set July 26, 2004 at 1:30 p.m. at Bussart Law Firm, 520 North Ellington Parkway in Lewisburg, Tennessee, for an investigative meeting concerning this matter. For purposes of this meeting, we have engaged Walter Bussart, Esq., as a special investigator to present evidence relating to this inquiry to the committee. You are specifically invited to appear to assist the committee in this investigation.

The result of this meeting could be: (1) a letter of understanding with conditions could be issued, (2) a complaint could be filed, or (3) the matter could be closed.

This meeting does not waive or preclude any other remedies available to TWHBEA under its rules or by law or equity.

Please notify Sharon Brandon at (931) 359-1574 if you will be in attendance before July 20, 2004. You may attend without participating in any way in the discussion if you choose.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Very truly yours,

Jack Doss, Chairman, Enforcement Committee

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