Optometrist facing animal cruelty charges in trouble again

Elaine Kmiec found violating judge's order

By Syan Rhodes - Anchor/Reporter

TOMBALL, Texas - A Tomball optometrist facing criminal charges for animal cruelty is in trouble again for violating a federal bankruptcy judge's order relating to that case.

In August 2014, as part of a bankruptcy judgement, the judge ordered the seizure of more than 100 collies found at Elaine Kmiec's Tomball home.

At the time, Kmiec claimed to be a breeder, but in court Monday, Kmiec's attorney said her client was a hoarder, suffering from serious mental illness.

Houston Collie Rescue got a tip recently that Kmiec was collecting animals again.

"We had a feeling it would just be a matter of time before we caught up to her," said Vickey Willard, with Houston Collie Rescue.

They found six dogs and five cats inside horse stalls Kmiec was renting on a Magnolia ranch.

"This was the beginning of another hoarding situation," said Zandra Anderson, a Texas dog lawyer.

Pictures show the cats stacked on top of each other in small plastic crates and dogs with mange and glue caked on their ears.

In court, Kmiec told the judge she misunderstood his order to not keep, care for or own any animals. The judge called Kmiec a liar and said she had "no moral compass." He said the only way to make sure she didn't fall back into her old habits was to make her wear a GPS monitoring device, a move applauded by the animal rescue group.

"If we can track her and monitor her, we can find out if she's has other animals she's caring for and hopefully this will put a stop to what she's doing," Willard said.

The dogs and cats are now in the custody of Houston Collie Rescue and will be adopted out to the public when they are medically cleared.

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