On June 23, Sharon Wells-Markland, who runs an exotic bird sanctuary in Montgomery County, found an uplifting e-mail in her inbox: A man contacted her about a lost macaw that Wells and three other women had rescued earlier that month.
|Houston, we have a d-bag. (Shawn Rice, above; Michael Acosta, seated). |
The man was referred to Wells-Markland after spotting a picture of the bird on the Houston SPCA's found animals site. He identified himself as Shawn Rice, and he said the bird -- "Lucy" -- belonged to his mother, who was in Kentucky tending to her recently deceased mother's estate. He claimed his parents' home in Spring had been broken into, and that's how the bird got out. He said he wanted to pick up the bird, which is only worth about $500, according to one of the bird experts who got caught up in these events.
Wells-Markland had no way of knowing at the time that the man was a fugitive from Kentucky who would ultimately threaten to sue her and call the cops on her. Once Hair Balls got involved, Rice threatened to call the cops on us. He claimed to belong to a prominent, influential Houston family. He claimed to have a mutual friend who knew an executive with our parent company. The dude, it turned out, was straight-up weird. A bunch of people recently had to endure his incessant bullshit, and we would like you to do the same.