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Wednesday, December 26, 2018

BRUCE LANGLOIS TRIAL TO PROCEED: December 21 Michigan Supreme Court Decision Paves Way For Unauthorized Practice Felony Trial In Huron County Circuit Court

BREAKING NEWS: Bruce Langlois, a registered sex offender and former Lowell, Michigan veterinarian who lost his license in 2015 for negligence, incompetence and “lack of good moral character’’, will finally face a criminal trial in Huron County Circuit Court stemming from charges filed nearly two years ago by then-Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette.

Langlois was charged on March 1, 2017 with three felony counts of Unauthorized Practice of Veterinary Medicine for allegedly presenting himself as a licensed veterinarian and practicing veterinary medicine with a suspended veterinary license. 

Each charge is punishable by up to five years in jail and/or a fine of $5,000. Langlois was also charged as a habitual offender -3rd Offense.

The one-day Huron County Circuit court trial, originally scheduled for July 25, 2017, was delayed by “a question of law that hinges on statutory interpretation”.

The Huron County trial court denied the prosecution’s motion in limine to preclude Langlois from presenting a “delegation defense” to the jury. 

In 2016, the Michigan Bureau of Professional Licensing received complaints that defendant had performed “spay and neuter” surgeries without a valid license. 

An investigation revealed that Langlois owned a business called “Spay and Neuter Express.” 

Dr. Duane Fitzgerald, a licensed veterinarian, worked for Spay Neuter Express as an independent contractor and was designated as its attending veterinarian. Dr. Fitzgerald described the business as “an ambulatory service that serves remote areas or rural areas for spaying and neutering people’s pets . . . set up in a mobile home that has been converted to a surgical facility.” 

Langlois was charged with three counts of the unauthorized practice of a health profession related to performing veterinary surgery in December 2016 while his license to practice veterinary medicine was revoked. 

During a preliminary examination, Dr. Fitzgerald testified that on December 16, 2016, Langlois performed many of the surgeries that had been scheduled for that day, and that he and Langlois performed their respective surgeries in the same general area. 

Dr. Fitzgerald stated that he did not oversee Langlois, and agreed that he did nothing to ensure that Langlois was performing the procedures properly and did not check to see how many procedures Langlois had completed. 

Fitzgerald also believed the animals on which Langlois operated were his patients, not Fitzgerald’s. Dr. Fitzgerald was aware that Langlois’s veterinary license had been suspended or revoked. Fitzgerald characterized defendant as a competent surgeon who possessed the knowledge and skills to perform veterinary surgery. 

After Langlois was bound over to the Huron County circuit court, he moved to quash the information on the ground that Dr. Fitzgerald, a licensed veterinarian, had properly delegated to him the surgical tasks that he performed. 

In response, the prosecution asserted that a delegation defense was unavailable as a matter of law, and also moved to preclude Langlois from presenting such a defense to the jury. 

After an evidentiary hearing, at which Dr. Fitzgerald testified consistently with his preliminary examination testimony, the trial court denied the prosecution’s motion, stating that there was not “anything within the statutes or rules that say,‘You cannot perform a surgery’ ” and that it was “a question for the jury.” 

An appeal to the Michigan Court of Appeals and, ultimately, the Michigan Supreme Court, followed. 

The trial court granted the prosecution’s motion for a stay of proceedings pending the resolution of the appeal, with the Michigan Supreme Court’s December 21, 2018 decision clearing the final hurdle delaying the trial. 

Langlois, whose 15-room, 8,000 square foot home (above) is currently on the market, has spent the last several months looking for his next gig.  

Describing himself in the post, Langlois states he is “a job seeker currently located in Lowell, MI. I am looking for a Full time job at the Executive level in the following industries: Organizational Development and Veterinary. I have experience with the following skills Leadership and Medical Education.”

Guess that sounds better than the truth: “I’m a registered sex offender with a criminal history even more disturbing than my record as a vet.”

More on this story as it develops.

1 comment:

  1. His crib looks like a good candidate for McMansion Hell. I will always be amazed at how long it takes to get these crooks in front of a judge.