The following video was produced by The Institute For Justice to explain the class action lawsuit filed against Indio and Coachella.
Ramona Morales, 79, had no idea a few chickens could be so expensive. She also didn’t know that prosecutions could be so profitable.
Three years ago, on a neighborhood street in central Indio, a city code enforcement officer spotted a few clucking birds inside a coop in the backyard of a small house. The chickens were a violation of a city ordinance, so the officer sent a written warning to Morales, who owned the house and rented it out.
At the time, Morales thought the warning was just a slap on the wrist for a small problem. This kind of minor headache is commonplace in the unpredictable life of a landlord.
She told her tenant to get rid of the chickens. She thought that was the end of it. It wasn’t.
“She didn’t know this little dispute about a couple of chickens would turn into nearly a $6,000 bill,” said Jeffrey Redfern, Morales attorney. “But it’s because these guys are making money off of her and everybody else.”